Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A beautiful Story

Mark Connors, quoted a recent small speech that Billy Graham gave. It is a beautiful story. Well crafted and a catchy finish. Much like a you find in science fiction short stories. Yet now reading it I find that Billy Graham has made some presumptions about his audience, here is the story...

‘I’m reminded today of Albert Einstein, the great physicist who  this month has been honored by Time magazine as the  Man of the Century. Einstein was once traveling from  Princeton on a train when the conductor came down the  aisle, punching the tickets of every passenger. When he  came to Einstein, Einstein reached in his vest pocket. He  couldn’t find his ticket, so he reached in his trouser pockets.  It wasn’t there, so he looked in his briefcase but couldn’t find it.  Then he looked in the seat beside him. He still couldn’t find it.
The conductor said, ‘Dr. Einstein, I know who you are.  We all know who you are. I’m sure you bought a ticket.  Don’t worry about it.’
Einstein nodded appreciatively. The conductor continued  down the aisle punching tickets. As he was ready to  move to the next car, he turned around and saw the great  physicist down on his hands and knees looking under his  seat for his ticket.
The conductor rushed back and said, ‘Dr. Einstein,  Dr. Einstein, don’t worry, I know who you are No problem.  You don’t need a ticket.  I’m sure you bought one.’
Einstein looked at him and said, ‘Young man, I too, know who I am.  What I don’t know is where I’m going.”

:: I suppose with my work especially in palliative care I came to the conclusion that most people were not really interested in where they are going. More they were concerned about life even short would be peaceful, pain free  and there family and relationships are at peace.
:: Many people of different cultures and faiths have just as much 'certainty' as Billy Graham. 
:: In my opinion most 'Australians' have a good understanding of 'pluralism'. When reading the story most Australians would just think it is just Christian 'Fundamentalism'. It is a story which would have worked 20 years ago without living in a multicultural society: but not now.

So what do I think...Yep I think Billy is right some idea of where we are going is important. It is part of the matrix of life that within us where is a desires for the Divine, to meet, and be with our maker. What I find troubling with Billy Grahams story is the presumptions come  in an evangelical package.