The time I am most mentally productive just so happens to be the time when I ought to be concentrating on haling/ dodging speeding cars. Funny how the mind works really.

Having  hitch-hiked the breadth of our fair country today, with a greater emphasis on the hiked aspect of it.  Unsurprisingly that left me with a lot of time to have a wee muse to myself. (While simultaneously becoming a connoisseur of roadside beauty.) Not least when I stumbled across this tiny little churchyard with some of the oldest and strangest stones I have seen in all of my years of skulking about angstily in graveyards. It got me thinking about the sentimental side of death, and actually realigned some of my previous thoughts on the subject to the extent that I had to whip out my laptop to scrawl down some notes.

Notes which looked like this:

Notes: The Role of emotion/ Rational thought > Evolution? ?

Emotion =/ Reaction to Emotion.

Walk along road/ Wee chapel/ Old stones. Stones =/ Sentimentality per se. Stone erodes = Memory of person erased??

Uninstall Rollback Software.

My old self felt that the way we view death is too sentimental, and not at all healthy. That we do the whole funeral jazz in order to somehow hold on to the essence of the person who has died, when we all know within ourselves that that person has gone, no matter your views of the “afterlife.” However today, standing at the foot of some ridiculously old stones it occurred to me that I was likely looking at literally the last impression that the people buried here have left on the planet. If they have any surviving family members it is highly unlikely that they come to “pay their respects” to their long dead relatives. So when their names become illegible, and when the stone inevitably returns to dust, that is the last the world will ever know of them. Looking at it in that light, it is less about sentimentality, and more  a personal endeavour to be remembered.

Sadly I think that all too often people equate the value of their life to how long they are remembered and by how many. When the true value is to be found in their actions, thoughts and the things which they said while they were alive. So at this juncture you can still roll me up in a carpet and throw me in a skip if I die, but who can be sure if this will change. Maybe I will become just another one of those scared old men, fretting about the end of days.

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