I’m dead but not dead. Death is an illusion of the end, a control mechanism, we fear death. Our actions are restrained by the idea of dying.
There are many versions of death in many different religions. In Christianity, it is believed that when you die you go to Heaven where you live an eternal life with God. Muslims believe that the life on Earth is only a preparation for the next realm of existence. For them death is merely a movement from one world to another. Buddhist people believe in reincarnation; once a person dies on this Earth, they will be reborn to a new life and the status of that life is dependent on the work they did in their previous life. We don’t know which one is right nor which one is wrong. What we do know for certain is that we’ll never know when we’ll die, nor how, but we know it will happen. Death is a anomaly, no one knows what proceeds. Scientists over many decades have been able to prolong death, but it’s wrath is inevitable.
For me, I’m not afraid of death. I’m afraid of dying and knowing that I had lived a meaningless life. It has oftentimes been said that when we are in a life-and-death situation that our entire life flashes before our eyes. We see it as it was; perhaps not our entire lives, but certainly the significant parts. I was in a life-and-death situation not too long ago. It was late one night and my friends and I we on the way home from a party; we needed to get home before eleven and it was already ten minutes past. We were rolling on a two lane road and my friend decided to go above the speed limit since there were only a few cars this late at night. As we were driving, a car on the opposite side of the road suddenly swerved into our lane and was headed straight towards us. At first the car had no headlights on, but then the driver turned on his high beams and all we could see was a blinding bright light. My friend went into shock and became frantic; he couldn’t do anything except halt to an abrupt stop and hold down the horn; the road was too narrow and no one could see anything because of the light. I would guess that the driver was going about 60 mph and it looked as though the driver didn’t intend to stop. This is the part where people say,”My life flashed before my eyes . . .” My life did flash before my eyes, and what I saw was . . . nothing. Absolutely nothing.
“The tragedy of life is not death, but what we let die inside of us while we live.”-Norman Cousins
I closed my eyes, something happened and then there was a loud and deafening screeching coming from the approaching car’s tires. Everything came to a stop; nothing moved, no crickets chirped, no birds sang . . . All you could hear was the two car engines roaring. I was 10 feet away from being on the headline of the local news station; “Three teens were found dead late last night after a horrific car accident.” This guy had the audacity to roll down his window and curse at us. The driver was obviously drunk; he held a beer in one hand and gave us the bird with the other. This experience opened my eyes. It made me realize that at any moment I could die, and I wasn’t doing anything with my life that I could be proud of.
Many of the people in my life have died; you’ve never experienced grief until you know what’s it like to realize that the person you love most will forever only be memories. I’ve never cried at a funeral nor will I ever. I don’t cry because I try to convey myself as a tough person; I don’t cry because I know death goes hand in hand with the privilege of life. It’s not a matter of if someone will die, it’s when. You can’t avoid death, the moment you are born, you’re living on borrowed time.
“A thousand times we die in one life. We crumble, break and tear apart until the layers of illusion are burned away and all that is left, is the truth of who and what we really are.” -Teal Scott
We are just a number, another entity taking up space, a spec of dust in the vast galaxy. On the boundless scale, our life is meaningless . . . unless we make it meaningful. What are you doing with your life that you can be proud of? Before you go into the clouds, when it’s you turn for your life to flash before your eyes, what do you want to see? Only once we’ve learn to accept death into our lives, can we truly be free.