Sunday, June 4, 2023

#155 / Death Is Not The End [?]

The exhibition is currently being shown at the The Rubin Museum Of Art, which is located at 150 West 17th Street, in New York City. If you are just getting the word on this, don't worry about missing the show. You still have lots of time. The exhibition opened on March 17th, but won't close until January 14, 2024. I found out about the exhibition from a review in The New York Times, which appeared in its Sunday, April 30, 2023, edition. 

You will note, in my title for today's blog posting, that I have included an addendum to the title of the exhibition: [?].  
Iris DeMent still seems persuasive, to me, when she suggests that we should stop making hard and fast assertions about "what happens next." If you have missed it, so far, I suggest listening to her song, "Let The Mystery Be." 

As just reported, I am a little bit uncomfortable with those who make the assertion that "death is not the end," indicating that they are absolutely certain about that. Let me indicate, however, my even greater lack of sympathy for those who make the contrary assertion - and particularly those who do so as if they have been privileged to know the truth, scorning those whose religious faith, or other, faith, compels them to make the claim that our lives don't end with the grave.
The right approach, the way I see it, is to make up one's own mind - and then to keep quiet about it. No assertions are appropriate. It's the assertions, from both directions, that can do damage to us, since our ideas about "what comes next" do affect how we live in the here and now.
To try to "bridge the gap" between those who claim that "death is not the end," and those who very definitely state the contrary, I am recommending recourse to William Wordsworth. Wordsworth's famous poem, "Intimations of Immortality," stakes out a kind of sweet spot, it seems to me. "Intimations" of immortality are pretty much the most that I can claim, from my own experience (and what Wordsworth claimed, from his). To speak of "intimations" about immortality, instead of making "assertions" about it (either to claim that we are "immortal," or to claim, in some definitive way, that we are not) is perhaps the only truly honest reflection of our real situation.

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