The Unspeakable Subject
Looking out the attic window, the eight year old girl wondered what would happen if she jumped. Would she fly off through the sky free as a bird or would she plummet to the ground like a stone and shatter into a thousand pieces. Would those pieces still be her? Would they feel the hardness of the concrete or would she melt into nothingness? Would she no longer exist? Would she not move like the rat her cat killed or be slimy like the roach Daddy smashed with his shoe?
During those few moments looking out the attic window I first consciously wondered about death. This wonderment continued over the years, as I lost friends, my mother, and my fathers. This fascination led to me writing , The Ultimate Wonder, World Stories Illuminating Death.
But, when I mention my book’s title, people don’t gush and ask, “Oh wow, what kind of stories? How did you come up with that idea?” Death is a subject most shy from discussing. Some cultures hold the topic of death as taboo. But, as a Buddhist, the reality that death may happen at any moment keeps it forefront in my mind. As a nurse I have seen those who, although knowing death was coming, refused to accept or prepare for it, and meet the end in pain, anger, and fear. But others, who finally accept their next journey manifest a peace and calm that often surprises those around them.
So, do you contemplate death? Is it something you fear? Do you feel how we live our lives can influence how we meet death?
For myself, I fear the oncoming of death; the finality. Nothing. I like being conscious. For a loved one, I feel that death is a part of life and that all things must come to an end. But I hate funerals. I can’t stand them. Good blog post. I am thinking of a good one to write right now about this!
Glad to be a source of inspiration and thanks for responding. I too do not like most funerals.
I mostly worry about what would happen to the people who depend on, were death to come sooner than later. For myself, I hope to be around for a while yet and behave as if I will be, but I’ve had many great experiences and don’t feel discontented with the idea of being “robbed.”
Very provocative post, Sky.
Thanks for responding.
For me, Death is not the opposite but a simultaneous phenomenon to life. Life and Death are like the rail tracks – mostly always parallel. You write beautifully. Thank you for sharing.
Thank you for responding.
Skywalker, I relate to The Unspeakable Subject. It is so true. I have found that with a lot of my patients who are dying also. Some scared, angry and some at piece. Thank you for sharing. Very well written
Hi sky, It’s going to be an interesting book. Since death in this form is inevitable, there’s nothing really to contemplate, but I do fear pain, now and at death. I’d really rather die in my sleep and move peacefully on to the next phase, whatever that may be. I’m going to write a living will specifying that everyone wear bright colors (specifically my favorite color, yellow) at my funeral, and absolutely no crying. 🙂 Of course, there are things that can influence in some ways, how we meet our death. If we practice the things that are risque, i.e. if we commit strong arm robbery, we’re asking to get shot. If we use abuse drugs, and alcohol, we could possibly die from the side affects of these substances. Therefore we can certainly influence how we meet our death. Of course, you do know that sometimes the circumstances of one’s death is revealed to him or her in advance. These are usually people who are spiritually enlightened and have the inside scoop!
Love your writes, they’re always food for thought! 🙂
Thanks for sharing your thoughts Lisa.