Honey, you left the light on, she said, no doubt a smile on her face, but it was that way, cloying, insistent, her words a cheerful admonishment, barely, but that tone, I knew it, and it cut into my brain, and I knew she knew it, and I don’t know why, I don’t care, but this time I stopped, turned, and spoke, quietly but forcefully: get out, get the fuck out, leave, leave now, this is my home, not yours, I own it, you don’t, we’re not married, not legally, and she screamed and cried and begged, shocked, she took her things, what she could manage, and left, sobbing, howling, a few of the neighbors popping their heads out, an older couple out in the hallway now, asking for help, glaring at me, but I didn’t care, not then, still don’t, I just sat on my couch, light still on, turned on my television, it immediately asked me if I wanted to continue watching my favorite show, I yelled, cut it off, tuned to something else, and enjoyed finally being alone.
Are we alone?
Billions believe in (a) God.
Probably millions believe in both a God and in (advanced) extraterrestrial life.
Surprisingly, the more a person believes there is no God, they believe more in alien life.
We want not to be alone.
We need to believe.
God or aliens.
What do you not believe?
Can you ever believe that the Eucharist is true?
The bread becomes the flesh, the wine becomes the blood? A covenant between God, person, flesh, blood, spirit?
Church teaching places the origin of the Eucharist in the Last Supper of Jesus with his disciples, at which he is believed to have taken bread and given it to his disciples, telling them to eat of it, because it was his body, and to have taken a cup and given it to his disciples, telling them to drink of it because it was the cup of the covenant in his blood.
How could anyone, even a churchgoer, a member of the congregation, actually believe in the Eucharist?
Jesus took a loaf of bread, and after blessing it he broke it, gave it to the disciples, and said, ‘Take, eat; this is my body.’ Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks he gave it to them, saying, ‘Drink from it, all of you; for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.
Even for the most devout, it’s not real, it can’t be, there is no transubstantiation — the magical changing of bread to flesh, wine to blood. Rather, the Eucharist is a ritual, a symbol, a communal show of faith. Still, some insist, embracing their ignorance. The Catholic church, for example, teaches that “the signs of bread and wine become, in a way surpassing understanding, the Body and Blood of Christ.”
But the course of humanity is the inching closer, closer, closer still toward understanding.
The Bible is a makers guide — virgin births, bombs from the sky, sound as a weapon, soon, resurrection of (some) life.
But are we really going to replicate the fantastical Eucharist?
It seems inevitable.
But for now, there’s only this:
Researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago have identified a molecular switch that converts skin cells into cells that make up blood vessels, which could ultimately be used to repair damaged vessels in patients with heart disease or to engineer new vasculature in the lab. The technique, which boosts levels of an enzyme that keeps cells young, may also circumvent the usual aging that cells undergo during the culturing process. Their findings are reported in the journal Circulation.
The human adult skin cells used by (Dr. Jalees) Rehman’s team can easily be obtained by a simple skin biopsy. “This means that one could generate patient-specific blood vessels or red blood cells for any individual person.”
Closer, closer still.
How long can we preserve someone’s flesh?
How long before we are able to take a scrap of a person’s flesh — whether alive or dead — and generate (living) blood for them, of them?
The more we advance our technology, the closer we get — not to God, that’s always the same, I suspect — but the closer we get to defining ourselves by the only thing of ours that is and always will be only us, our soul.
Make yours right.
Be ready, whether visited by God or aliens.