Death is a Reminder of Life’s True Nature

It was a usual Monday morning. It seemed like a very normal day until at the end of the 15-minute stand up when my manager broke the news that one of our colleagues had a brain aneurysm over the weekend and had been hospitalized. A sudden sense of shock took over all of us. It was impossible to believe. I had seen her on Friday and she was absolutely fine. The next Monday we hear the news that she passed away…. What? How? Why? All of a sudden there were so many questions in my head. She had just gone on vacation and never made it back. That night I lay in bed questioning the end of my life. Am I happy the way my life is going? Would I be fine dying the way I’m living? Would I regret my way of life if I died all of a sudden? How would I feel if I died like this? Would this kind of death/life make me happy? If not, then what is it that I need to change in life?

Hearing the death of someone, near or far shakes us up from the dust that has collected over and wakes us up to reality. It brings back memories of someone very close to us who has passed away. It brings back that if someone has punched a hole in our chest and feels as if we can neither live nor die. It feels like a huge sinkhole of emptiness in our chest.

I don’t know if I am qualified enough to write about death, but I also wonder whether I will ever be. Now that I am in the second half of the movie of my life… and halfway closer to death I make an honest attempt to pen my thoughts.

With all due respect, when Mrs. Sridevi Boney Kapoor died of accidental drowning the news channels were covering everything day and night and all kinds of experts were out there commenting on the reason for her sudden death. Plastic surgery, medications to keep her young, alcohol… but not one single soul ever thought or said that it was her time to go. Didn’t such simple truth ever occur to anyone? I ask.

When death comes, there is nothing one can do to stop it. If you are meant to die drowning, it doesn’t matter whether you are in a desert. If it’s your turn, just a fall from your bike is enough. The truth is, it doesn’t matter where you are, what you are doing, Mr. Death knows the exact way to get to us.

Then why is it that some of us can’t fathom the fact that death is inevitable? Why can’t we accept death as it is? Why do we try and reason out death? A heart attack, prolonged sickness, and so on and so forth…

Death happens to the best and worst of us. Death happens to the prettiest and ugliest. Death happens to the cleverest and dumbest. There is no distinction or racism at the hands of death. Then why is it that any time someone dies we want to know the reason behind it?

Death doesn’t follow the concept of time, death knows not of too soon or too late… it happens to everyone at their best time. But it’s we who measure death against a scale. Our scientists have done some analysis, research, and published the average lifetime of a person based on various aspects. But don’t we know that death can happen to anyone and anywhere…?

The best of surgeons might be at your beck and call, but when Mr. Death walks in, we just have to put our hands behind our backs like an obedient student and let him do his work.

Life is what happens to us while we are in the long wait for death.

While we are waiting for our turn, we find many things to amuse us and forget that we are in the queue and it can be our turn at any moment.

We believe that when we die, Dear God is waiting for us who will consider all the good and bad deeds we have done and reward or punish us. It’s not my belief, but I am sure that God who has created this universe has better work to do than judge us. It is you, who will judge yourself when you are on the other side. Why wait till you get there when you can’t change anything you did? Live every day as if you can look into God’s eyes when you are dead and say ‘I did the best I could in every way’. Can there be anything more beautiful for the end than this?

Live every day as if you can look into God’s eyes when you are dead and say ‘I did the best I could in every way’

Every death is nothing but a reminder of our mortality. Let’s live every day with the awareness that Mr Death is just one step behind us every moment. When it's time to let go, let us do it as if we had nothing to hold back. Death is just a passage where we shed the physical body and get back to our very essence. Isn’t it supposed to be a happy moment?

Let’s live as if today is the last and die as if we are waking up tomorrow. Don’t wait for death to come to wake you up and show you that you haven’t lived even a day of your life the way you wanted to.

When it’s my time, I want the people I love around me, to bid adieus and celebrate my life. And I pray that when my loved ones need me, I can be there for them. And I am sure that’s what we all want at the core.

P.S. - I do realize how painful the death of our near and dear ones can be. I also do realize this is not good enough to console anyone. But, my intention here was to show how fragile our life is and Death is the only and ultimate truth of our lives.

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