Four more mysteries of the great unknown. Mysteries that occur so frequently, we seldom even stop to think about them.
Each year in America, 2,100,000 people vanish from our midst - die - with a great many of them having no prior warning whatsoever. That's the equivalent of every last person being snuffed out in South Dakota, North Dakota and Montana - every single year.
2.1 MILLION souls.
Where do all these people go? Why them and not us? Why this year and not next? Why cancer or heart disease or plane crash? Why slow and painful for some and instantly for others? Why too old for many and too young for the rest?
If that wasn't puzzling enough, each year in America, 4,100,000 new souls arrive - are born - kicking and screaming, as if, they too, had no idea it was about to happen. All those births are the equivalent of adding the entire populations of Alaska, Oregon and Delaware to America - each and every year.
4.1 MILLION souls.
Where do these people come from? Why is one a boy and another a girl? Why is one born into riches and another into poverty? Why does one arrive handicapped and another gifted? Why black over white or red over yellow? Why does one gravitate to theater and another to construction?
We pop into existence from behind a curtain called birth. We apparently have no memory of whatever came before. We depart days or years or decades later behind a curtain called death. We apparently are unable to send messages back.
What in the heck is going on behind that curtain?
The set of senses we arrive with sure doesn't seem to help. They just create the illusion they do. Sure, we can see, but not so well as to detect the unlimited number of microscopic creatures living on our bodies. And we can hear. But even our dogs detect sounds that are out of our range.
And we can feel. But not so well as to sense oncoming storms or earthquakes - as even the most common barnyard animals can.
The fact is, our senses barely brush the surface of what's occurring around us.
So we're faced with a dilemma: We don't know where we came from. We don't know where we're going, and we don't know what's happening around us while we're here.
We've walked on stage in the middle of the play and have no idea what any of it means or what our purpose is for being here. In actuality, we know nothing.
Yet, we're so certain of our actions.
We watch what our society is doing - and rush off to copy.
We listen to the words of leaders - and rush off believing.
We feel the intensity of a friend's example - and rush off to follow.
Rarely do we ever stop rushing. Rarely do we stop to question our own actions, our own beliefs, our own purpose.
Rarely do we stop to question anything. Yet we know nothing.
Nothing that is, except that during the time it took to read this essay, 16 more souls have departed and 32 more have arrived.
Forty eight additional mysteries that remain unsolved...
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