CONSOLATION TWENTY-SEVEN: WILDERNESS REJOINED
My last two posts, on the Newtown massacre and the movie "Amour," have gotten me thinking about mortality and my close contact with it every two weeks at the hospice hospital where I volunteer. The "Wilderness Rejoined" subtitle above is a follow-up to my earlier Consolation Four, "The Wilderness," posted May 19, 2011, in which I define wilderness as every natural object, event, and evolution that has or will come to pass in post-Big Bang, cosmic spacetime. There I also define mortality as a rejoining of the atoms and molecules that comprise every percipient being after it dies with this cosmic wilderness and further argue that the human species, like all other species, randomly evolved from inorganic matter and merges back into it at death.
Now that I'm approaching my seventy-seventh birthday, I feel like giving mortality more attention than I have in the past and hence in future will probably write occasional posts like this one that focus on it. While I realize that relatively few people choose to ponder their own extinction much, I hope that those who do and who happen to read this blog will be joined by others interested in seeing an aging materialist wrestle with the subject. So until I'm either too depressed to write about dying any more or have said all I have to say about it, I'm afraid my readers will have to put up with posts like this from time to time.
Every two weeks I spend Wednesday mornings at the hospice hospital sitting with actively dying patients. Patients who are "actively dying" have been so classified by the medical staff because they're within minutes, hours, or at most a day or two of the end. (Here follow circa 1500 words describing my regular routine at the hospital and recounting my shift last Wednesday with a brain-damaged prisoner who'd been transferred there from the city jail after suffering some kind of blow to the head. The complete text, originally posted 3/28/13 on my personal blog, can be viewed by clicking here onto: [consolationsofatheism.blogspot.com])