Saturday, April 15, 2006

I believe in tragedy

I started this post on March 28, but life has a way of distracting me from the blog. Ha. This is part of the series I started here.

Watching the world play out on the blogosphere can be, at times, disheartening. People wear their heart on their sleeve, and it's sometimes easy for me to think I have some pretty good answers. Answers for myself. Answers for everyone else. But, ultimately, it's a solo journey through life. Everyone makes their own progress at their own pace. Help may or may not be there, but it's no good unless it is accepted.

Life can change in an instant. People may go out for a coffee break and never come back. Get hit by a car. Have a stroke. But, really, although I just finished a biography about grieving and read pages upon pages of how hard it is to deal with death, it's not that big of deal for me. I'm around it all the time, and I think my religious beliefs make everything a little less tragic.

However, there are other tragedies. Heart wrenching, gut twisting, anguish provoking tragedies. Take, for example, David in the bible. Bathsheba. Sex. That was a tragedy I feel acutely. There are other famous books, movies, plays... friends, neighbors, family members... that also figure in my mind as being examples of terrible tragedies.

What makes tragedy so horrible is not merely the loss of life, but rather the unnecessary suffering. Suffering that has no purpose, no productive reason that can later be cited. Suffering that is caused by stupid mistakes and aggravated by pride.

Ultimately, tragedy is real. And that's what makes it hard. Tragedy hits us all in small or large ways, often or infrequent, but everyone gets a piece. Those tragedies that are unavoidable, let's face with dignity, but let's be wary enough to distinguish the ones that are our own making.

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