Sunday, October 21, 2007

Death is a Natural Part of Life

Death.

The word itself conjures up feelings of loss, difficulty, and pain.

Although death is a normal, natural, to-be-expected part of life, it is still hated and feared. Maybe that is because no one really knows what happens when your heart stops beating, and your brain waves cease. Despite many claims to the contrary, all investigation has discovered is that we don't know what we face at this final frontier.

Death, in many ways, is similar to birth. The process can be painful, laborious, and messy. We are fearful of the death process, because we don't know the end result, the way we (generally) do of the birth process.

At best, we go to a place of eternal happiness and delight; at worst, a place of eternal torment. But what is really scary is, despite claims of various religions to the contrary, there is a possibility we simply cease to exist, like a candle flame that's been snuffed out. Nothing remains of our thoughts, our dreams, or our consciousness.

And since we don't know with any certainty what awaits us, we do our best to stave off not only death (exercise, eat right, wear a helmet, seat belt, etc.), we also work to avoid even the appearance of age - advanced or otherwise - as if, by appearing young, we will persuade Death to select another, less nubile victim.

Perhaps, if we could learn to view death the way we view birth, our fears would dissipate, knowing that while where we go is unknown, it is just another step on the journey of our existence.


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