We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are. – Talmudic saying
If you haven’t read Preparing my Funeral yet, start with it. The post brought back a mixed bag of responses, like concerned questions about me, cheering !! of happy-funeral seekers, to calling my writing self-indulgent and distasteful. Gosh, it is impossible to have you all agree on something.
How about this: you are dying right now. Each living moment takes us one step closer to death. Those who live in a war zone or experienced a life threatening illness are probably much more present to this. But even if your biggest concern at the moment is the temperature of your iced drink - keep sipping, but it doesn’t change the fact.
I believe that if you aspire to be fully engaged in your life journey, you cannot ignore its fundamentals – your own mortality. So thinking, writing, discussing, painting, singing about death is not just fine, but necessary. Your views, judgements, fears, beliefs and not-beliefs about death – whether expressed in open, to yourself in the shower or hidden in the dark corners of your unconsciousness – shape the way you participate in life. However awkward or scary it might seem, I say bring them out to the open and set judgements aside.
For example, people ask me why I do so many things. Simple. Here is a situation that, so to speak, scares me to death: I am lying on my deathbed with an idea that I wanted to do something and I didn’t try it. Even writing this sentence makes my neck sweat and my eyeballs dry up. No! No! No! I’d rather make a fool of myself. I’d rather fail in everything I tried and die with a background of subtle whispers: “he was such a loser.”
Apart from this, what’s scares me about dying: medical procedures, pain and helpless states that are often associated with it. I say:
If you’re putting me to rest
Make it easy, smooth and fast
Now it’s your turn. What is your story?