Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Sancrified Ground

I visited the church here a few days ago... or more, it was a while, but I've been thinking to write about it a while, I just forgot, but almost every night I've thought, tomorrow I'll write it down.

It's not about the church per se. Churches are churches, no matter what religion or how big or where in the world. I have one solid idea, or opinion, or thought about churches, so they're all the same in that way. So I don't have a lot to say about the church.

But they have corpses in there. Remains. In sealed coffins on display for so many years. Hundreds of years. It was strange to me, because my faith says that the dead return to the Lifestream and move on, and it was odd, near absurd, to have the bodies of men and women dead hundreds of years ago still here. There was no good or bad to it. Just strangeness. Like watching a man turning himself inside out. Not obscene or facinating or gross. Strange.

And in one of those "rooms", I walked in and around the coffin, and this thought came pounding through in that way I really honestly only read about before. Otherwise I'm all too often aware of how I myself form the thoughts and then present them to myself, but this one was unprovoked. It just came, like someone else speaking. I was wearing my cap, and the thought said, "Take off your hat in the presence of a king!" Exactly those words. In english too.

I debated it for a second or two, because kings are really just men, and if the king cared, so what, and if he actually has some power because he was king, he's still dead, and if he still retains some kind of influence, he probably understands that it's just the modern ways to keep the cap on... and so on. A second or two. And then I took off my cap.

And now when I try to write something that makes sense about it, I keep coming back to; forget it. Thers is no need to explain. And also how representative of my personality the whole thing is.

11 comments:

Kristin said...

Hey! You deleted a post. I knew it!

Alex said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alex said...

So did you, some days ago! :p

On topic; they really have corpses inside the church for display? Thats.. morbid.

Kristin said...

Not "display" - the cascets are wooden (as far as I can remember?). And on the hat-in-the-precence-of-a-king thing, I believe you are speaking of Gustav Wasa, and managing to overthrow the king of Denmark at that time was pretty damn impressive. And of course he had to fight for his power, rather than inherit it. I guess that makes him worthy of some kind of archaic sign of respect.

Kristin said...

Men det är lite lustigt att de har en "ny" relik. För ett par år sedan fick de en benflisa från Heliga Birgitta - det var en gåva från Birgittaordern.

Kristin said...

Och väldigt ironiskt att Gustav Wasa och Birgitta vilar i samma kyrka, med tanke på att Gustav Wasa bytte till Protestantism - så att han kunde konfiskera kyrksivler (för att finansiera sina krig) och kyrkklockor (som gjöts om till kanoner). Desutom snodde han sten från ett kloster för att bygga ett slott.

Rik said...

I don't see it as so strange to keep corpses around. It's just like keeping anything else around. Stuff is stuff, whether or not it used to be occupied by a person.

I don't see it as any different than keeping someones' old clothes around. It has historical interest.

Sara said...

Sen är det inte konstigt om man blir humble när man är i domkyrkan, det är trots allt det den är byggd för.

Iceye said...

The caskets are generally stone. And some people lie beneath the floor with plates on. I wish they wouldn't do that, because why would you want to step on a grave?

Anyway, I've always felt that getting rid of the remains is the respectful thing to do, like by burning it or letting it decay naturally underground. I can see why you'd keep them, like for making a link to the dead though. I mean the whole "presence of a king" probably wouldn't have happened unless I thought... well, the point is actually that I think he's in the casket, whether he is or not... hm...

Rik said...

From my point of view, whatever's in the casket is majestic by association. Kind of like those "king's chairs" they have, special chairs that the king sat in whenever he came visiting.

Why do you feel it's more respectful to get rid of the remains?

(Oh, and did I tell you about the Sikh dude whose worst fear was getting buried? Not alive, just buried after death)

Iceye said...

You did. I can see why.

I think the body is kind of like a skin that you shred when you die, and the only reason people don't burn or bury them themselves is because, well, they're dead, they don't have time. So you should do it for them as a last favor.