Monday, July 07, 2008


I have just been watching a very moving C4 documentary, The Miracle of Carriage 346, on the aftermath of the London bombings on 7 July 2005. The term "miracle" is often misused (by religious believers and non-believers alike) as a synonym for arbitrary magic. A better definition would be "a potent sign of life". This programme used it with dignity - not positing a deus ex machina protecting some and ignoring others in the midst of tragedy, but highlighting the life-giving and death-defying significance, as Gill Hicks put it, of "every person who touched me and who I touched that day." Gill, the last person to be rescued alive from the train carriage in which 26 died, has gone on to be a vigorous advocate for the excellent NGO Peace Direct, and talks of her post 7/7 existence as "my second life" which she will use to work for humanity because "it did not come without preconditions": a sense of responsibility she has willingly embraced through and beyond her disfigurement.

No comments: