In Robert Speaight’s The Unbroken Heart, a novel sadly neglected in the long years following its publication in 1939, a character named Arnaldo has just been told of his beloved wife’s untimely death. His reaction, by today’s standards, seems very strange indeed. “It does not really interest me,” he confesses, “to know by what accident Rhoda died. All our lives are an accident and we must all die somehow.”So begins Regis Martin's article, "Will Anyone End Up In Hell?" (Crisis Magazine, May 1, 2014). Read more >>
So what does interest him? The answer, to his interlocutor at least, sounds almost incomprehensible. “I want to know how she died, what was in her mind, what her soul said to God when she fell from the rampart. Nothing else is of the least importance whatsoever. Our life is directed to that moment when we fall from the rampart, and our eternal destiny is decided by that. But I see that you don’t believe that.”
Nor, would it appear, does anyone else. Certainly not anyone these days, i.e., people anxious to appear hip and stylish, their opinions plugged into the usual circuits of secularity. People for whom the parameters of life are far more plausibly found between the covers of, say, Time or Newsweek or People Magazine, are not interested in tracing the soul’s trajectory at the moment of death. A huge eruption in sensibility having taken place in recent years, the traditional eschatological landscape remains largely unrecognizable.
[Hat tip to JM]