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Re: Bodies & Religions

John Donne, Divine Meditations, No. 7:

At the round earth's imagined corners, blow
Your trumpets, angels, and arise, arise
>From death, you numberless infinities
Of souls, and to your scattered bodies go . . .

This was a practically universal belief among Christians at one time; I
have no idea who believes what in the twentieth century, but in the past
both Protestants and Catholics were convinced that the body and soul would
be reunited at the moment of resurrection.

If you want to see a slightly odd twentieth-century interpretation of the
doctrine, consider Stanley Spencer's painting "Resurrection, Cookham":
it's very much in the comic-grotesque tradition of Hardy's "Channel
Firing," which portrays another resurrection (but slightly premature) in a
village churchyard.

William S. Peterson
English Department
University of Maryland

        Web site: "English Literature and Religion"

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