Friday, April 18, 2014
He descended to the Dead
The Great Questions are worth study. What is it to be fully human, as we would wish to be? What is it to live a good life? What is it to leave that good life, as we all know will some day be our fate?
The older I get, the more moving I find the story of Holy Week. Psychologically, we all experience triumph. Psychologically, we all experience betrayal. Watching your spirit descend to the Dead is something that I personally have experienced, in the cold, dark, silent hours. Knowing that a Grace beyond understanding is coming is something that I've experienced more than I've deserved these last years. That knowing is a special gift, one that has kept me moving forward.
That wasn't there for Kang Min-gyu. He was the vice principal of the South Korean High School who set up a class trip that ended when the ferry boat ripped it's hull apart on rocks. Hundreds of his pupils are missing, many no doubt ending their short lives in the dark and cold waters.
He was overcome with grief for his charges, and doubtless no little guilt. And so yesterday, his spirit descended to the Dead. And when that journey was complete, he hung himself from a tree outside the school.
Today is a Holy Day, not a holiday. Today is about Mr. Kang's journey, and our journey, and His who this day is about. What can we learn from others that can aid us on our own journey? It's said that the longest journey a man will ever take is the eighteen inches between his head and his heart. Some don't survive the trip.
This reflection is hard, as must be anything truly worth while. I hope that you - and I - make good use of this pondering.