17 May 2007

Heart Attacks: A Satanic Coincidence

My sister-in-law's father just had a heart attack. So did another guy in his church men's group. Both men are surviving but are not doing particularly well. Both these heart attacks occured within a couple of days of each other.

I say it's quite a coincidence. My wife and her religious friends think it's a concerted attack by Satan on the men's group.

She says I'm too practical, but what else is there but practical?

Both men are in the same age group (old), with similar interests and lifestyles. Based on what I know about the sister-in-law's family, a healthy diet has never been a strong suit of theirs. In other words, both guys are at elevated risk of a heart attack.

Therefore, I'm willing to put it down to coincidence that both attacks occured within a couple of days of each other. What happens when someone gets a heart attack but no one else they know gets one too? No one thinks the single heart attack is a Satanic plot. But many people do get heart attacks, and if heart attacks occasionally coincide, what's the big deal? (As an added bonus, a very good post on coincidences was in a recent Carnival of the Godless from Greta Christina's blog.)

Add to the fact that, for a men's group of almost a dozen people, two heart attacks doesn't exactly seem like an all-out assault.

Also, when was Satan's plan of attack giving people heart attacks? I though Satan was supposed to tempt people to sin, not try to kill them.

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7 Comments:

At May 17, 2007 3:21 PM, Anonymous mel said...

Good point. Last time I checked, god was the only one with the power over life and death and god's the one who kills people...or gives them heart attacks or whatever.

Satan's the one who attempts to place a dead girl or a live boy in the same bed with the guy who god is about to kill.

I agree that it's important not to get the roles of our supernatural beings confused here.

 
At May 18, 2007 1:13 PM, Blogger Necator said...

I guess Shaitan did in old Falwell too eh?

 
At May 18, 2007 4:38 PM, Anonymous Berlzebub said...

Also, when was Satan's plan of attack giving people heart attacks? I though Satan was supposed to tempt people to sin, not try to kill them.

This sort of thing seems to be a lack of faith, to me. As Mel said, Lucifer (or as I prefer to call him, Beelzebub) was never written as killing anyone.

Not only can Beelzebub not kill anyone, he wouldn't want them to die unless they had sinned enough for him to claim their soul. Otherwise, them dieing is useless to him. So, by claiming that the deaths are the work of the Devil, they are infering that the Devil wanted their soul. How can he get it? Only be taking a sinner. Therefore, they are saying that the person in question was not as pious as they seemed, and was going to Hell as a result.

To be such a bad guy, Beelzebub doesn't seem that threatening. He couldn't interfere without the bearded man's permission (I suspect the writers even left that part out in Genesis), he couldn't harvest souls himself, and he was the one who gave mankind knowledge of right and wrong. You'd think they'd have come up with a villian that was more powerful, especially for such a long work of fiction.

-Berlzebub

 
At May 18, 2007 6:10 PM, Blogger Sacred Slut said...

So, by claiming that the deaths are the work of the Devil, they are infering that the Devil wanted their soul. How can he get it? Only be taking a sinner. Therefore, they are saying that the person in question was not as pious as they seemed, and was going to Hell as a result.

Excellent point! Love to see the wife's reaction to this logic. Hee hee.

 
At May 19, 2007 5:14 PM, Blogger Stew said...

Because these attacks were within days of each other people see a pattern and look for a cause. I'm wondering, how far apart would they have to be before people no longer see a link? Personally, the fact that they are already DAYS apart makes them unremarkable. hell even if they had happened on the same day I'd see nothing untoward. If voth guys had had their heart attack within MINUTES of heach other I might think "wow!" how's that for coincidence. But what if these 2 attacks had been weeks apart or months? At what level of separation does people's incredulity break down?

 
At May 22, 2007 3:04 PM, Blogger King Aardvark said...

You guys all make great points, and I'll have to see what my wife thinks about that if I talk to her about the heart attacks again.

Necator: if Satan exists, he sure as hell is getting ahold of old Falwell, so that one would make sense.

Getting back to the unfortunate gentlemen at hand, I don't think either of them died, so they wouldn't go to hell currently anyway. Playing devil's advocate, these guys are both of very strong faith and are generally good people, so if they die, they are going up rather than down. In many cases with even slightly religious people a traumatic event strengthens their faith, and we can suspect that that is the case with these two, however, perhaps Satan is hoping for the slight chance that the trauma would cause them to doubt.

Phooey, this is too much playing along for me. All the rationalizing is making my brain hurt.

Stew: I can see these people thinking that the coincidence is striking given that I hadn't heard of anybody in my wife's circle of people having a heart attack at all in the past 2 years, so two heart attacks in a couple of days could be pretty striking. Still doesn't mean much to me though. I'd suspect that for people who are of faith and always searching for signs, anything up to a month could be considered supernatural.

 
At May 22, 2007 4:29 PM, Anonymous mel said...

Oddly, it's been my experience that life's traumas tend to cause an increase in faith rather than the opposite. If Lucifer were real, I think he'd also have to be real smart -- smarter than your average theist. In which case he'd want to make our lives exceedingly comfortable and stress-free in order to cause us to lose faith in god. That's just always been my impression of human nature.

 

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