Feels Like Crucifixion

Excerpt from Humiliation by Wayne Koestenbaum

We take other people's ordeals seriously as an emblem for our own, lesser humiliations. A believer notices Christ's crucifixion and takes interpretive , imaginative liberties with it. A believer says, "I'm not being crucified, but this fever — this divorce — this foreclosure — this lawsuit — this insult feels like Calvary." 

Maybe just knowing that you will eventually die feels like crucifixion. Maybe knowing that you will become a bloated, disfigured corpse, and that someone who doesn't care about you (hospital attendant, mortician, heir) will move your dead body into the proper position for a dead body to occupy — maybe this knowledge, that a stranger or a lover will one day find your body disgusting and smelly, and will want to dispose of it quickly, is a way of taking Christ's lynching personally. 

The turn toward religion — and toward the salvific of suffering (imagining that humiliation can be alchemized, redeemed) — reveals a perfectly human wish to seek correspondences between lower and higher, left and right, blighted and whole; whether religious or not, we aren't wrong to ask that small events find their meaning through comparison with larger events.