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Graveside physics

Ears pricked up on the occasion when Einstein was called upon to deliver a eulogy at the graveside of one of his colleagues. Surely the sage of science, who had seen further than most into the realms of reality, would have something remarkable and insightful to say. “Brief is this existence, as a fleeting visit in a strange house,” he said. “The path to be pursued is poorly lit by a flickering consciousness.”

To his first reflection, I make no objection. “Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day”- exclamation mark squared! To the second, I have full sympathy. Who hasn’t visited some grand hotel, but with too little time to visit its every nook and cranny? And who will disagree that there is much in this life that remains untapped and unexplored? But to the third of Einstein’s observations, I raise my frown. The path that is called life is not poorly lit, but its edge illumined and made clear by Him who said, “I am the Way”.

Perhaps Einstein was looking for some elegant equation, or the guideposts of his much-quested unified field theory, to reveal the light of life. And certainly, he had seen much in that famous mind of his; even enough to dazzle the cleverest. But the path called ‘life’ is no quantum stream of consciousness, but involves a Person. And when He is known, there is no flickering, but flame, and no limping, but a steady and purposeful advance.

DM 12th March 2022

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