17 December 2009

Between the devil and the deep blue sea

During our weekly visit to the Homewood Public Library this past weekend, Jean and I picked up the DVD of "The Deep" episode of the BBC's fantastic documentary "The Blue Planet". After work last night (and following a bit of universal remote finagling on my part), we sat down on the sofa and watched as Sir David Attenborough described some of the strangest creatures found on planet earth (a sample is below):

It was interesting to learn that not only is the sea bed the least-explored part of our planet (more people have been to outer space than have been to the bottom of the ocean) but also that every expedition discovers new and ever-more-odd species of life.

Most of these species fall into two categories: Hunter and hunted, just links in the food chain. At that depth, it's a short chain and the different species have evolved in strange ways to ensure their survival. There are some ugly mothers at the bottom of the ocean, to be sure. As we watched some of the more violent-looking creatures, Jean turned to me with this thought:

"They look so murderous," she said. "I wonder if that's some sort of karmic hell."

It's an interesting, albeit sobering, thought. In my humble opinion, you would have to lead a seriously horrific life to be reincarnated as a creature found only on the cold, dark sea bed, never seeing the light of day, with your previous transgressions manifested in your appearance.

My bigger question is this: If that is a karmic hell, how would you get out of it?

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