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"The Absinthe Drinker," Edgar Degas

Barely Alive ... Fully Alive

Life: Issue Three

Birth. Death. What lies in between? A short span, often punctuated by suffering and loneliness. Each of us must wrestle with the “perennial problem of human finitude” (Ratzinger) and face the question of our life’s meaning. Is it good . . . fundamentally? Does it promise anything? Does it keep its promise? Absent hope in a good answer, we try to escape reality with numbing diversions of various kinds—from screens to drugs. We hang on, barely alive. Instead, when we attend to the glimpses of goodness in our existence, it is possible to engage it fully alive in the hope that our finitude will blossom into the abundance of eternal life.

Humanum: Issues in Family, Culture & Science
Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family
620 Michigan Ave. N.E. (McGivney Hall)
Washington, DC 20064