phrases, sayings, idioms and expressions at

Facebook  Twitter

From ashes to ashes, dust to dust

Posted by ESC on February 13, 2005

In Reply to: From ashes to ashes, dust to dist posted by James Briggs on February 13, 2005

: : This phrase, taken from Genesis, is well known.

: : But, in terms of our human origins, how accurate is it? Did we indeed arise from ashes, or did humanity truly emerge from dust? And, if it is true, how do ova and sperm fit into this scheme of things?

: : SL

: Purely allegorical. We arose from basic chemicals, via amino acids etc. Whether a Creator was involved is a matter of personal choice, but the chemistry is pretty clear - from simple to complex.

"Ashes to ashes, dust to dust -- A phrase from the English burial service, used sometimes to denote total finality. It is based on scriptural texts such as 'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return' (Genesis 3:19), and 'I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee' (Ezekiel 27:18).

Ashes to ashes and dust to dust
If God won't have him the Devil must.

According to Sir Walter Scott...that was the form of burial service given by the sexton to the body of the French spy Guiscard, who, in 1711, had attempted to murder Robert Harley." From Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable revised by Adrian Room (HarperCollinsPublishers, New York, 1999, Sixteenth Edition).

On a really personal note, that's how I would like to end my physical existence on the Earth. Absorbed back into the ground. But, last time I checked, the U.S. burial laws make it difficult to take that route.

See: the meaning and origin of the phrase "Ashes to ashes, dust to dust".