My grandfather died

On November 1st 2015 my lovely grandfather- Pappy, as we called him -died.

We knew he was going to die because he had dementia and had suffered two strokes, that didn’t make it any easier, but what did help was knowing that he wasn’t truly gone. Maurice Stevens hasn’t vanished and ceased to exist.

I know that he lives on because the first law of thermodynamics tells us that no energy gets created in the universe, and none is destroyed. This is where the idea of ghosts comes into play for many, but I know that all of his energy, every joule of heat, every wave of every particle that was him remains here, somewhere. All the hundreds of billions of particles that encountered him have continued on their way, directed by his mere presence. Still.

As Aaron Freeman says in the Physicists Eulogy ‘according to the law of the conservation of energy, not a bit of you is gone; you’re just less orderly.’

This may have troubled Pappy slightly because he liked everything to be “ship shaped and Bristol fashion. A place for everything and everything in its place”, his career as a chef in the Royal Navy never truly left him. But look up at the stars, look at the world around you and know that this is our place and we are all in it.

Many of my geeky friends recite the lovely fact that “we are all made of stardust” because our origins are pretty inspiring, and so too is our destination. This is why I take comfort from the nature of the universe and our existence because deep down, beneath the feeling of loss, I know that I am statistically fortunate to have ever known Pappy and that his existence lives on in our genes, our memories, in his actions and in the universe.

Life is extraordinary, it’s bigger than any one of us which can be a bit overwhelming at times but, as Pappy would say, ‘it’s good here, isn’t it?”


About Hayley Stevens 420 Articles
Hayley is a ghost geek and started to blog in 2007. She uses scientific scepticism to investigate weird stuff and writes about it here while also speaking publicly about how to hunt ghosts as a skeptic.

7 Comments on My grandfather died

  1. My father, Clem Spencer, died this year. He was an artist. So I guess you can say he lives on through his work. But it’s an intriguing notion that, like your grandfather, he’ll always be around – here, there and everywhere.

  2. I’m so sorry Hayley for your lose I know I speak for many people when I say that I Guess it comes to us all in the end.Sorry that you lost a guy that sounded a massive part and a very positive person in your life. Bless you and great post. Hope you have a a Merry Christmas and I wish you much success for 2016. My utmost regards .

  3. Whenever someone dies, I have made a point of telling their loved ones a story that exemplifies traits of the one who has passed. I also show how those traits have influenced and changed my own behavior. Each person passes on something to the next. I didn’t know your grandfather, but through your writing, I have seen enough to feel that your grandfather has passed on his desire to seek order in the face of chaos. That is a mighty fine gift.

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