He has touched your perfect body with His mind

'And you want to travel with Him, and you want to travel blind
And you think maybe you'll trust Him
For He's touched your perfect body with His mind.'

A year ago, Leonard Cohen died. Wonderful songs, from another, softer time than today when words had a meaning; no screaming of angry emotions. Fortunately, he wasn't that kind of man. I taught and analysed his songs at school with my most mature students. We talked about Suzanne and about Jesus, and we loved the ragged girl who lived by the seaside. I longed to be that girl and live that kind of life and I have done so, in many ways.

'And Jesus was a sailor when he walked upon the water
And he spent a long time watching from his lonely wooden tower
And when he knew for certain only drowning men could see him
He said all men will be sailors then until the sea shall free them
But he himself was broken, long before the sky would open
Forsaken, almost human, he sank beneath your wisdom like a stone.'

Dying is a mystery, one we cannot accept because it invades our lives. But do we really die? Can we die? The German philosopher Safranski holds that 'the human mind can't think its own non-existence and as such, is immortal. Plato's Socrates says that the conviction about the immortality of the soul is the experience which the mind has from itself.' (Safranski, Das Böse oder das Drama der Freiheit, 1997/ Het Kwaad, p. 36)

Lucette VerbovenComment