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Seeking out reason on the Highway to Hell


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The Real Mackay by Dan Mackay

Getting things into perspective.
Getting things into perspective.

I knew something just didn’t chime quite right when I would rock up to church with ACDC’s Highway to Hell blasting on the car stereo. Their frontman Bon Scott would often remind me ‘hell ain’t a bad place to be’. I was confused.

Even General Booth, founder of the Sally Ann, conceded the devil had all the best tunes. It seemed to affirm my own ‘rock ‘n roll damnation’ (another great track from the high voltage Oz rockers).

On the other hand, I was surrounded by a lovely congregation. There was absolutely no doubting the sincerity of their convictions.

But whilst my own beliefs held firm, at least for a while, I could never resolve the obvious conflicts and contradictions that seemed to haunt me on an almost daily basis. It was then, and remains now, a seemingly irreconcilable mystery.

Are we, as Forrest Gump once struggled to figure out, floating along on a breeze, or is there a plan for us? Or maybe a bit of both?

You might wonder why any of this should matter. You may well be right, but the continued nightmare of this ongoing pandemic does seem to ask some big – maybe unanswerable – questions.

Did this global viral epidemic just happen by chance? Or was it engineered?

When I look at the state of the world today I see two competing ideologies in the tension between a religious understanding of events and explanations provided by science.

According to the former, everything is pre-destined. It’s all part of God’s plan known even before each of us was born, with a conclusion known only to Him. Whereas science’s more systematic observations and analysis often appear irrefutable.

So in this screwed up world we need – every now and again – to climb to the top of a mountain and look down and try and see the big picture. To put things in perspective. To ask the big questions like: what’s really going on out there? What are we to make of it all? Has mankind set a curse on itself? Who is really in charge?

I don’t expect Boris Johnson will provide any illumination. I’m often uncomfortable with the choreographed pronouncements of politicians and their advisers as we "follow the science". I find myself very cynical about party-political motivations. When we were told to stay indoors, was it really the NHS we were trying to save or the neck of the miserly Tory party?

No wonder conspiracy theorists abound!

Pray the damnable Omicron variant will be kicked into touch so we can get back to some ‘livin’ easy, lovin’ free’ as we rock along the highway to hell.

Dan Mackay, Wick.
Dan Mackay, Wick.

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