Thursday, March 8, 2012
Trust the Medical profession to call an obituary record of physicians, Necrology! Death of tissue; necrotic tissue; "remains" described in completely organic terms. I guess it's reality, but you know, "remains" suggests that the necrotic tissue is just what's left. "The remainder!" What went? The Vital Force! Thousands of touchings; millions of seeings and hearings; hundreds of lovings; history for many; memories in abundance; connectedness to the Universal! The BC Medical Journal came the other day and I knew 10 of the group that died over the past few months fairly well out of the 20 or so odd physicians listed. That is not surprising given our ages, but some of us check the obituaries more frequently than others to stay in the loop, at a certain stage. There is no contest to see who is going to live the longest but recognizing eventually that, "When you are old you will stretch out your hands and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go", there may be the hope to defer. That was not just Peter's future, but is for most of us as well, at least the lucky ones that get to a ripe age. Those of us who practiced medicine for many years may fight against it, but in fact accept death at work all the time as a norm in ourselves and our patients. It always seems to come as a great surprise to most patients and family and yet the average "in hospital" death rate varies from 2.1% to 5% depending on the factors such as intensity levels, age corrected criteria, etc. Most people prepare for a new birth with all the paraphernalia for the newborn well in advance, not knowing exactly the time of arrival, but they all want to be ready. There can't be anything more important than the passage into a new life and the preparation to welcome the new Force Vitale! The passage out of the old life to "God knows where" has the same immensity. Why then do so many fail to get ready in the same way and operate by denial? I guess, like Peter, they probably do not want to be led where they do not want to go. I'm afraid necrology is just a little too organic for me. Pathology notwithstanding, there is more to it than just tissue.