Friday, October 19, 2007

I've often wondered

At the end of our lives, when we die, we are judged by Jesus in the particluar judgment. I see many people who aren't very cognitive at the end of their lives. The may have dementia, be suffering from brain cancer, or they may be topped out on narcotics to relieve the pain from cancer. Either way their mental abilities are in these cases impaired.

Do you think, at that last moment, when they are about to face the judgment seat of God and the devil is trying to tempt them into hell, that God restores their cognitive functions so that they can better protect themselves and prepare their souls for their eternal destination?


Tom in Vegas said...


I believe that if God is the God of Love, it is His love for His creation that ultimately triumphs over the sinfulness of that individual. I'm not saying that we are all automatically saved and can carry-on in a theological consequence free environment. That is simply non-sense. But it’s impossible for me or for you to figure out why people act the way the do, i.e. sin. Heck, we can’t figure ourselves out what makes us think we can figure out other people! So when people sin, we don’t know COMPLETELY the motivating factors behind their comportment. Perhaps is the lack of His presence that shapes their behavior. It is impossible to know God completely and sin. It’s almost like committing suicide. Physiologically speaking, the human body wants to live and remain alive, so when someone takes his life, we assume that individual was not of sound faculties. Only God knows for sure your interior disposition and what motivated your sinfulness.

Least of all do I see the wrath of God condemning in perpetuity a poor infirm who can’t think because his mind is so far gone he doesn’t just know right from wrong, but he can’t tell what hospital bed he’s in, his name, or any other information about himself.

One thing I should remind you of. The Catholic Church has officially declared people to be in heaven. But never - NOT ONCE - in its two-thousand year history has declared anyone to be officially in hell.


ignorant redneck said...

I'm with Tom.

Besides--if you are not of sound mind, you are not generaly culpable.

paramedicgirl said...

IR, even if you were not fully cognitive at the end of your life, what about all the sins you committed in the years you were fully cognitive?

In this post, I'm talking about the mental state of some people at the end of their lives and I wonder how that affects their ability to defend themselves against the attacks of the devil when he comes to tempt them into despair at the moment of death.

Shirley said...

I have a little different take on this: What may seem to us as a person who is not cognitive doesn't necessarily mean that he or she can't communicate with God, only that they can't comunicate with us. God exists outside of time and for sure beyond our comprehension. I think it is possible that the hour of death, between us and God can transcend human reason and perception.

paramedicgirl said...

Shirley, I like your response, and i think you may be on to something there. You've made some very good points.

Pilgrim said...

This is an interesting question for me since my father has a brain injury that has left him... not himself. I think Shirley is right. Although he cannot communicate well with us, he can communicate with God Who is above all matter and time.

uncle jim said...

I would think that my cognitive state at death would have very little or nothing to do with my spiritual communion with the heavenly spirits at the particular judgment - some of us may wish it would be easy to dodge culpability that way, but I fear not.

Anita Moore said...

The saints tell us that we will die the way we've lived. We spend our whole lives choosing our eternal destination. It's true that God can and does work miracles of mercy for those about to die, but it's also true that some people, hardened by a life of habitual sin, reject this grace. Also, the fact that many people are not in their right mind during their final moments illustrates how presumptuous it is to figure you can do whatever you want and then repent on your deathbed.

I think it's necessary to pray throughout one's life for the grace of final perseverance and protection from sudden and unprovided death. I personally do this whenever I pray the Sorrowful Mysteries.

Mark said...

Regarding diminished mental capacities; the materialist understanding of the human person is at odds with the notion of a person has a union of body and soul; reason, a faculty of the soul, uses the body as a pathway from the material to the immaterial; and the immediate judgement will be performed on the immaterial side of this fence.

We who stand outside of the closed door of the one so diminished, often assume that what we are aware of behind our own open door is not possible behind their closed door; It is my considered opinion that this is not so.