Watched an autopsy late last night (cos everyone does that when they can’t sleep right?) that was after I binged on a few episodes of Star Wars: Rebels and a couple of episodes of Tested on youtube. What was a moment of morbid curiosity became a heavy pressure that dulled the meaning of this present life.
 The words of the Preacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem.  Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.  What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun?  A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever.  The sun rises, and the sun goes down, and hastens to the place where it rises.  The wind blows to the south and goes around to the north; around and around goes the wind, and on its circuits the wind returns.  All streams run to the sea, but the sea is not full; to the place where the streams flow, there they flow again.  All things are full of weariness; a man cannot utter it; the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.  What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.  Is there a thing of which it is said, “See, this is new”? It has been already in the ages before us.  There is no remembrance of former things, nor will there be any remembrance of later things yet to be among those who come after. (Ecclesiastes 1:1-11 ESV)
I saw the hopelessness of our situation. What used to be a person lying on the table, maybe a promising life, maybe already a success, was being reduced to a bag of organs in skin. I suppose it was an unnatural death so the body was analysed like how a mechanic would an old car, stripped to nothing effortlessly and a post-mortem conducted to check for injuries and cause of death. Care was taken to preserve the outer appearance but everything internal was just taken for inspection.
A voice says, “Cry!” And I said, “What shall I cry?” All flesh is grass, and all its beauty is like the flower of the field. (Isaiah 40:6 ESV)
Perhaps in a different situation the individual would have been parted out as spares for those who would have need of it. The culmination of a series of unfortunate events for the deceased would be turned into a shot at life again for the recipient of whatever life-giving organ was viable. Honestly I’m a little afraid to be an organ donor now after watching how the cadaver was treated. Don’t get me wrong, there was no disrespect. Just effortless efficiency, dispassion, a drive to move swiftly and quickly without any pause to reflect or think. Why would they feel the need to right? This person wasn’t home anymore. Her body was there but her ghost had have moved on.
Having seen worse, the gore was completely manageable. However, meditating on the choices which would have faced the living made it tough to internalise what was happening. Perhaps this person’s relatives had to make the super tough decision to take her off life support? What would that be like for them? What would it like to be the deceased being parted with so much speed? It’s just the body, but the body in combination with the ghost had been a person. How much of a person is his ghost? and how much of him is the body? If you swapped bodies with someone, how much of you would still be you?
Interestingly enough, the sermon on Sunday would be about death. Some quick notes from Tim Keller’s Sermon.
“Hope in the Face of Death” from the series “What we are Receiving: The Gospel Goods”
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
- How people deal with death: 1)Stoic, shut down emotions. 2)The modern approach: deny that it’s a bad thing, death is ‘natural’, circle of life stuff
- We are afraid because 1) death takes away things that are meaningful and love relationships and 2) we are not sure what happens after
- Jesus wept at death of Lazarus. Death is unnatural, grieving is an okay and appropriate response
- We were made for eternity
- Grieving is okay but add in hope, like salt and death becomes the doorway, not a tomb
- Love is perfected in our new life
- Our body is perfected in our new life
Some heavy stuff huh!