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Trust and Safety: I Am in a Cage

Joined: 12/22/2010
Posts: 10
I am in a cage, surrounded by sturdy metal bars to shield me from what lies beyond. I am in a cage, encircled by the sharks of our day with their teeth bared and their jaws ready to snap. I am in a cage…but am I really safe?

The question posed to us is not whether we can trust the institutions around us to keep us safe. No, we cannot answer it without knowing what safety is. It is relative. Do you feel safe cage diving with dozens of sharks around you? ‘Cause I don’t. Maybe you’d feel safe as long as you knew no one has died at SeaWorld before. I still wouldn’t. What is safety? Is safety being shielded from physical harm? Or is safety enjoying your typical luxuries: good health, friends and family, a roof over your head, and a hot meal on your table each evening?

Yet even with all of these things, there remains an emptiness. We are not without our insecurities, questions like, what comes after life? Where am I going when I die? Or am I getting this “living” thing all wrong? Is it about living for now, or living for eternity? These are the questions that plague every person who has lived, lives, and will live—not just philosophers. You’ve thought about it. I know you have. So have I.

Does anyone know for certain? If not, can we really feel safe when we are unsure about what’s to come? For me, safety is knowing that my soul is secure. Everybody wants to go to heaven. Sure, not many want to die to get there but we all want to know that when we’re gone from this world there will be something waiting for us. Eternal oblivion is a hard concept to grasp, and an outright ignorant one in my opinion. There must be a heaven.

And if there is a heaven…is there a hell? What would be the point of living if heaven is open to all? Life can be thought of as a test. But you’re not graded traditionally, where everyone with at least a C gets to enter heaven’s pearly gates. The test has only one question, and it’s a stumper.

Do you know the Way to heaven? Ha. You’re thinking, “That’s easy. Be a good person.” But none of us could ever be the best we can be…and if we could, would we be good enough? So what is the Way to heaven? People have arrived at different answers…many, many answers—some closer to Truth than others. I’m not going to try to answer this question for you; you must answer it yourself.

But I’ll leave you with a quote. “What we do in life echoes in eternity.” (Gladiator starring Russell Crowe)

I am in a cage, and I can see pearls if I squint hard enough. I can see light, and golden streets. I still see sharks, clawing and snarling. But I know I am safe.
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