We fear what we don’t know. We fear uncertainty. So if we know that death is something we will all experience, why do we fear it? We may not fear death itself but the not knowing WHEN it will come. . Does talking about death make you uncomfortable? Is it taboo for you to talk about death? . Notice if these questions made you uneasy. Uncomfortable. And reflect on your own ideas and beliefs around death. I believe that if we talk about it it helps us to understand our emotions around it too. ❤️
First Thoughts About Death
Do you remember the first time you thought about death? I don't recall thinking about my own mortality when I was little. But do remember thinking about my parents dying and how I'd end up being responsible for my younger siblings. It was scary to think about!
Memories of Death Experiences
The first experience I have with someone dying was a classmate of mine named Diego. We were in 3rd grade when Diego died of Leukemia. I remember being sad that he was no longer going to be coming to school and that I'd get to see him. But I don't remember being scared. I had a feeling in my soul that he was fine, and that he was no longer suffering.
My second experience with death, came when I was in 7th grade. My classmate Juan Guillermo died from a heart condition. He had been very ill for a while, and had missed many months of school. His, was the first funeral I attended. This day I remember very well, because we had to sing at his memorial service, and I fainted! Luckily my art teacher caught me before I fell. This was a little traumatic for me.
Were You Taught to Fear Death?
I don't remember my parents ever talking about death in a negative way. It was quite the opposite actually. In my home, and spiritual believes, death was seen as the end of the soul living a physical life, but also a continuation of it in the spiritual realms. The example I was given, was that of a Bird in a Cage.
“To consider that after the death of the body the spirit perishes,” ‘Abdu’l-Bahá has said “is like imagining that a bird in a cage will be destroyed if the cage is broken, though the bird has nothing to fear from the destruction of the cage. Our body is like the cage, and the spirit is like the bird…if the cage becomes broken, the bird will continue and exist. Its feelings will be even more powerful, its perceptions greater, and its happiness increased…”1
Changing The Conversations We Have About Death
If we start talking about death differently. If we stop avoiding the conversation. If we stop telling our kids that their pet just ran away, or went to live on a farm, rather than telling them the truth. If we start using it as an opportunity to have these conversations and stop avoiding the subject of death! The more we talk about it as a process of life, like Birth, the less we fear it and the less uncomfortable we are talking about it.