As I have said before ,I don’t read ‘normal’ stuff anymore . I ask questions, search for answers , seek help etc.
A couple of weeks ago ,I finished Philip Pullman’s ‘The Good Man Jesus and The Scoundrel Christ ‘. I read it cos A) it’s written for kids , so it’s easy to read B) Philip is an outspoken Atheist and believes in – human beings/this beautiful world/ smell of coffee /the breeze on his face etc etc ( so we have a lot in common ) C) I first spotted the book in Jacob’s flat – so if it’s good enough for a trendy ,Newcastle Uni ( unless the previous occupant left it there ) student, it’s good enough for me .I’d say read it , no answers , just stories ( lots with holes in ) , and the fact that Jesus was a man and Christ is a title…and in this story they are twins.
Next I read ”When Bad things happen to good people”, by American Rabbi, Harold S.Kushner. He was inspired to write it after the death of his son Aaron ,at the age of 14 years and 2 days ,from a condition called Progeria . Id recommend this book – to me , he talks a lot of sense.
He includes a lot of profound statements , but for me , this paragraph is one of the most poignant
”Is there an answer to the question of why bad things happen to good people? That depends on what we mean by ‘answer’.If we mean ‘is there an explanation which will make sense of it all?’- why is there cancer in the world ? Why did the plane crash? Why did my child die?- then there is probably no satisfying answer.We can offer learned explanations, but in the end, when we have covered all the squares on the game board and we are feeling very proud of our cleverness, the pain and anguish and the sense of unfairness will still be there”.
He then goes onto talk about the word ‘answer’ , meaning ‘response’…..and so it goes on…and on …
Many years after his sons death ,Harold wrote ”I think of Aaron and all that his life taught me, and I realize how much I have lost and how much I have gained. Yesterday seems less painful ,and I am not afraid of tomorrow.”
I guess this is what I strive towards.