Wednesday, October 31, 2012

All Hallows' Eve

Death is transfiguration and transformation. October 31 is the day on which we think about that. Do androids dream of electric sheep? Do stainless steel rats dream of crystal spheres? Do we dream we are butterflies; or do butterflies dream they are humans?

I keep vigil on the night of October 31 not because I'm a Halloweenie. I do it because it is good to remember that death is a terminus — a boundary between two states. Whether you are religious or not, this is clearly true. You have certain rights in one state of being, certain rights (normally fewer) in the second state. You are someone much more interactive in one state, someone normally a lot less in the second.

But for me, the sober judgement of looking back through life and lives is an enlightenment. It lightens the burden of soul through the exploration of what it means to live and to have lived. And the light of the undiscovered country shines brightest on the boundary between the dying year and the harvest, and the living year and the spring.

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