Saturday, May 8, 2010

A Blessing

I do not have the writen story available to me right now, but it is an old story, a tale re-told many times over generations, I am sure. I will try to paraphrase as best I can.

A man who has had many troubles in his life goes to see the elder of the village, a wise old man, to receive words of wisdom and a blessing. He tells the wise old man his story of woes, and the wise old man says the following, in the form of a blessing over the younger man's bowed head.

"Grandfather dies, father dies, son dies."

And the younger man looks up and says, incredulous, "What, that's it? That's the best you can do for me?"

And the wise old man says, "You would want it any other way?"

It does not matter how old our children are when they are taken from us "before their time". If our children die before their parents die, it seems out of order. In our society, we feel that parents should die before their children. Sons and daughters should bury their parents, not the other way around. And yet, this is not always the case.

And when it does happen that a son or daughter (who could be a child or an adult) dies before his/her parents die, it feels not right to us in these United States, where we have top notch medical care and modern science to "fix" so many illnesses and damaged bodies. It just does not seem right.

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