At the beginning of the aforementionednovelby James Morrow, the book’s main character–disgraced oil tanker captain Anthony Van Horne–is visited by the archangel Raphael, who tells him that that God has died. This is neither a a hoax nor an illusion. Raphael is is real, speaking the truth, and–along with the rest of the heavenly host–dying of grief. The universe is unaffected by this death, for this is a non-contingent, Newtonian sort of cosmos set up so that it can continue without its creator–whose corpse, incidentally, is identifiably that of a Caucasian male, albeit two miles long and floating in the ocean. It is impossible to remain an unbeliever in the vicinity of the corpse; its lingering mystic aura provides its bona fides in a way none can deny.
Knowing that Death is speeding their way, the angels have carved a tomb for the Lord of Hosts in the Arctic and charged the Catholic church with arranging the burial. Obligingly, the Vatican buys a ship, hires Van Horne to captain it, and orders him to take the body to the icy mausoleum. But not everyone aboard is on board with this plan for perpetual interment. Some think it a better idea to cremate the body. Others hope that life may still linger in the divine neurons, and that God is not dead, but comatose, and thus think of the Arctic plan as less burial than cryonics. One character, an (perhaps former) atheist, thinks that validation of the paternalistic and eurocentric vision of God is terribly dangerous, and so hatches a plot to attack the corpse militarily and send it to the bottom of the ocean.
What would you do, and why?