“O, I die, Horatio.
The potent poison quite o’ercrows my spirit.
I cannot live to hear the news from England.
But I do prophesy the election lights
On Fortinbras. He has my dying voice.
So tell him, with th’ occurrents, more and less,
Which have solicited. The rest is silence.” — Hamlet
But is it? In now, my third consecutive post about death, I want to turn from its violence and its solace, to the fact that it is not the end. I want to talk about resurrection. I want to talk about the unknown, the music after the silence.
How do we even talk about life after death? Philosophically, it is not permissible to talk about transcendencies (in some schools of thought), yet it happens all the time, because we experience them. Elements of something other than this existence, permeate this existence, as if from another plane. Now, if that sounds mystical, it is because it probably is. The inspiration of most mystics has been this kind of vertical experience: an encountering of transcendence that reformats their entire life. But it is not confined to religious or spiritual experiences that would happen in a church or connect to any kind of god. We experience everyday transcendencies: in play and in laughter, in art and in nature, in death and in birth. These very human moments reveal that there is a thin sheet between our reality and something other, something beyond.
I cannot guarantee a life beyond death. But I believe that the kinds of transcendencies that we experience, that are present with us in this life, point towards Life, towards a living God, who has encountered us and who has entered into death to bring us all into the life of God. To believe and to live in any kind of transcendence, from play to resurrection after death, requires faith, an openness to the other, to movement beyond oneself and beyond this world. It is the same movement, that life does not end where we would expect it to, that there is a music after the silence of death.
We live. We die. We live again. That is the Christian movement of life. That is the understanding of the resurrection. It is life made glorious. It is embodied. It is communal. It is beautiful and full and there is food, laughter, joy, and all hopes realised. There is no more oscillating between being and not being, but there is one equal presence. There is no noise nor silence, but one equal music. There is no fear. And there is no more death. When we live again, we will live as we live now but fully: in the very life and movement of God. The very Life of the divine Life will be ours. And in that dance, we will ever be. We live. We will die. And we will ever live. Jesus said, “I am the Resurrection and the Life.” By living and dying and living again, Jesus has journeyed before us what will be our journey. By trusting in his faithfulness and grace, we can enter Life and Resurrection.