Friday, January 20, 2012

Risking a Question or Two

I'm going to risk sounding quite depressing, pessimistic and maybe even nihilistic with the questions I want to pose today.  But, ask I must.

Here are some facts about life that many would agree with (or so I presume):

-Life, as we know it, ends with death.
-A human being faces suffering.  Typically, this happens on a daily basis.  Suffering tends to come and go given the seasons of life and the coming of old-age and the deteriorization of the body. 
-The deaths of people we love are incredibly painful events (unless one is perfectly apathetic).
-Throughout life, one inevitably encounters a variety of factors, influences and circumstances that may prove to be beneficial or painful.  Life is certainly a mixture of both, and not purely one or the other.  (The economy, relationships, politics, etc).
-Life is filled with joyful moments, though they often appear to be blips on a screen that is tremendously ordinary (some would even call it boring) and often seem to be outweighed (at least in quantity) by struggle, pain and suffering. 

Given this list of conditions (that is by no means exhausted here) that a human life encounters, why is that life worth living?  Why, especially given the emptiness of death and the oft-injustice of suffering, is your life meaningful?

I realize this opens into an ocean of questions.  My hope is that they are answered personally.  I also hope that we can entertain just one more:

-Why, given the facts of life (listed above, amongst many others) do human beings seem to desire parenthood (which is a phenomenon I've seen in more and more of my friends in their 20s, both religious and non-religious alike)?  Why is it worth bringing life into a world so cruel and filled with pain?  Why watch your children experience the same/similar struggles, sins, fears, hurt, etc. that you went through?  Why, in light of the apparent finality of death, is life continuously worth bringing into the world?  (Because it doesn't always just happen that...poof!  Here is a child!  Leaving the parents scratching their heads...While certainly this may happen often, we cannot dismiss this desire for children, and the reality of the fact that a natural end of sex is procreation). 

I pose these questions on the eve of our journey to DC in an attempt at some serious thought throughout the weekend.  God bless!

1 comment:

  1. I have to disagree with you first fact and quote Tolken, "End? No, the journey doesn't end here. Death is just another path, one that we all must take. The grey rain-curtain of this world rolls back, and all turns to silver glass, and then you see it" (The distant shore)(Heaven) (Gandalf, Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King).