My musician sister sent me the Colbert farewell YouTube video. It was removed from the internet by Viacom who owns the copyright, so attached here in Vera Lynn’s rendition that gave hope to so many during WWII.
I have heard the Vera Lynn version many times and understood why it meant so much to so many. But this post is about my unexpected response to the Colbert version.
First of all, let me assure any doubters that I personally do not believe in heaven as most people understand the term. And if I did, I would not be motivated to try to get there. Sitting around in a perfect world, with no problems ever to solve, with no one in need of an extra act of thoughtfulness, with no creativity because everything is already perfect sounds excruciatingly boring.
But as I watched the Colbert video, I suspended my unknowing, and began to wonder if, in some mysterious way that I cannot fathom, we will, indeed “meet again” in a next life. What would that be like?
I imagined sitting around a fire, when our two dogs burst into the room, barking in wild enthusiasm as they recognized us. And then Mom and Dad and my sister Mary who died almost twenty years ago joined us. We each had a glass of wine and began to exchange stories. And I asked them all the questions about what they thought about this and that, questions I couldn’t ask after they’d died. And then four more dear friends came, and we continued to talk late into the night.
Of course, I would want them all eventually to leave. Except the dogs. I mean, sitting around the fire with a glass of wine forever would get to be pretty boring too. I need sleep. And besides, I don’t have a very high tolerance for alcohol.
So I don’t think I’ve figured out the great mystery of life and the universe in which it is evolving after all. The scenarios offered by various religions are inadequate metaphors at best. Some super-mathematical scientists suggest that there are an infinite number of universes in which life repeats itself in every possible version. And another scientist has just seriously suggested that when the Big Bang happened, Time began to run both forward and backward in two different parallel universes. Maybe we are in the universe where time is running backward and will eventually run into the universe where time is running forward. I confess it doesn’t make a lot of sense to me.
The best I can hope for is that when we die we become part of some kind of transcendent consciousness. And I say that only because I haven’t the faintest idea of what that means either.
I think I’ll just listen to the Vera Lynn YouTube again and be grateful for the mystery of life that has been given to me right now.