We took our “Holy Week” holiday a few days early, heading to the beach on Saturday and getting back yesterday, just as the hoards of city dwellers were starting their own pilgrimages to the beaches. So we are back in Manila for the next few days and it is blissfully calm and quiet. I woke this morning at 6:30am, looked out at the back yard, and was surprised to see a flock of some 14-18 grey doves or are they pigeons (the same family I gather) foraging for worms or other edibles. They combed the lawn efficiently, covering lots of ground and seemingly making a point of avoiding previously scoured areas. It was an unusual sight. Perhaps only once or twice a year do I ever see doves or pigeons in our yard, and this was a pretty well-timed visit, if you ask me.
The doves just seemed so content and so peaceful, as trite a description of a dove as that could be… They walked and sat around, seemingly chatting about how nicely lush the lawn was, and wondering if the homeowners would put on a sprinkler soon so they could take a bath, and oh that little earthworm was just perfection and that there seemed to be a lot less pollution on their flight over. They just kept yapping away that I was able to go get my camera and from a distance, snap several photos.
They didn’t seem to mind my presence, and they even walked over to the pool, peering in to see if it was shallow enough for a bath. But they decided against it and continued foraging for food. I wish we had some bird seed around, I would have fed them silly. But they got me thinking… so early in the morning. I am not a religious person (but probably headed to Rome this year to cross the doors, Mrs. MM says to have all my sins forgiven, that’s a free pass I can’t resist, sounds too easy to me) nor a particularly spiritual one, (and more likely to believe I would more likely turn to worm food if I had not intervened by leaving instructions for a cremation in a really good pizza oven), but I think I believe most in trying to do the right thing, most of the time, for the sole reason that I believe it is the right thing to do, not because of reward or punishment at some future date. I have often wondered aloud, what if you do just turn into worm food, wouldn’t that “reward” or at least not “punish” those of us who maim, kill, rob, rape, plunder, etc. etc. in this life? Our daughter said to look up “Pascale’s Wager” as she tried to steer me to a more mathematical approach to the issue…
I certainly HOPE there is eternal life for those who want it, if only to reward those on this world who really “deserve it” but I equally hope there is such a thing as eternal damnation, for those on this world who also “deserve it”… but if it should happen that you do indeed just turn into worm food and nothing else, then I just hope there is a lot more PEACE right now because we are intellectually capable of it, we just don’t seem to collectively want it enough. My thoughts and prayers this Holy Week go out to the families of the innocent bystanders who were killed and injured in the most recent terrorist attacks in Brussels, Belgium.