Mark 16:8

They went out, and fled from the tomb, for they were trembling and bewildered; and they did not say a word to anyone, for they were frightened.

filled with too much information
our mothers were flabbergasted

this will take some gestation
before it can speak on its own

from outside appearing overcome
great pondering deepens distance

a wilderness widens to welcome
urgency transfigures to enough

The Greek and its traditional translations into English leaves much to be desired. Victoria Phillips, in Levine233, affirms that,

The three emotional responses of the women (‘fear’, φοβος; ‘astonishment’, ἔκστασις; and ‘trembling, τρόμος) have positive ethical connotations through­out the Gospel.”

“Trembling” and “ecstasy” (better translations) are different than “terror” and “dread”. Sabin2199 reflects,

…the meaning of the women’s “fear” is contextualized not only by the precedents of the disciples’ awe but also by their “trembling and ecstasy” (tromos kai ekstasis)—which are, in Mark, the feelings that accompany a breakthrough in human perception.

Religious “fear” throws us into creative confusion as we are consciously caught between the models of our everyday and what might yet be. My own preferred last word is not an undifferentiated “fear” but either “awed” or “flabbergasted”.

Aichele173 concludes that “the reader has yet to encounter the resurrected Jesus.” Those yearning for such an encounter will take heart from a later poet, T.S. Eliot—

With the drawing of this Love and the voice of this Calling
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.

We are left with a basic choice of storing this story away to see what our unconscious will do with it or returning to the beginning to re-read the story through the lens of every character encountered and with an appreciation of our own partnering in such a story.

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