Lots of thoughts today as I fast and prepare for a colonoscopy tomorrow. Having to drink the awful bowel wash makes me grateful that this is not a daily routine. I’ve voluntarily fasted in the past for a number of reasons. At one time I fasted at least once a week as part of a regular prayer routine. I was very devout in the observance of those fasts. I had a friend who was on a juice fast that lasted 40 or 50 days. I’ve read about Gandhi’s legendary fasts. Fasting can be cathartic. My fast today is strictly for medical reasons. The doctors want to know the source of my pulmonary emboli and colorectal cancer screening is part of their plan to provide a comprehensive assessment of what triggered my brush with death in September.
In “Canticle of Creatures”, St. Francis writes of Sister Death. He expresses so well what many of us westerners fail to grasp. In the west we dread death and yet it is a part of life. These doctors who have prescribed this examination tomorrow are trying to keep me alive and in better health. Lately in contemplating my own mortality I’ve thought often of what happens after I’m gone. I don’t have an answers only theories expressed by theologians. I guess I’ll never really know and when that day comes I won’t be back to write in this blog what happened and so you won’t know either.
When I really think of how good God has been to me I have to conclude that if there really is life after death that it would be good. All of my life is evidence that God loves me. St. Francis wrote:
I hope tomorrow brings more life, but the older I get the more I wonder what comes after this? It is my fond hope that heaven is like Mt. Irenaeus.