Sunday, March 06, 2011


I am in one of those moods today to write about a not much talked about topic , but of which I often think . Our normal excuse always is that we are too young to start thinking about death , I think there is never a right age to start thinking about death . It is a reality of life, as much of a reality as life itself is . We live and we die and the unfortunate part is we always forget in our daily routine that our life has a expiry date . We keep living our lives as if we are going to be on this earth for ever .

Ok , so why do I think we need to be aware of the fact that we are going to die one of these days , there is a very simple reason to it - It just makes us enjoy our lives better because we know that this awesome run that we are having on this earth is not going to last too long .
So what exactly are the advantages of thinking about death
1. You become aware of the fact that life passes by really quickly - 25 years have passed by already in the blink of an eye , how much time do you think another 50 years is going to take . Another two blinks of a an eye and it will be all .done
2. Once you know that life does not really last that long , then you know that you better use it in a good way and feel happy about it . There is no point really cribbing about anything , anything that brings negative emotions in you and prevents you from enjoying life is really biting into the small amount of time that you actually have on this earth . In short you stop taking Life too seriously .
3. Knowing that life has expiry date also means that you have to start making a list of things that you want to do when you can do them . Do you really want to spend your entire day , locked up in a office , doing things you hate when you can actually be out there doing something you really like .? Well you can afford to do those hateful things if you had infinite time in your hands not when you have only a few moments .

I know we have all heard this thousands of times in the thousands of forwards that get sent to us , but one thing I have found is that any time I am aware of this thought , my life changes , my actions start to have more meaning to them . I know I need to enjoy this moment thoroughly because this moment will never come back ever again . Is it tough to do this , ohh ya , what with our minds jumping around all the while , but is it worth doing this , for sure it is .

So what started this chain of thoughts today in my head . I met a couple in the temple today . They lost their 19 years old daughter due to distracted driving . Her friend was driving the car , turned around to pick up a napkin and crashed . So now they work on promoting awareness on distracted driving , they hold a vigil and walk every year , the money that they collect goes to her foundation , they are trying to contact reporters , govt officials and people everywhere to spread awareness on this . I could see the emotion in their face , when they talked about their daughter but at the same time there was a strength that if they have to make her memory a good one , they need to do something about it . It is very rare to meet people like this who can turn around misfortunes in their life into a meaningful passion . I told them , I cannot express in words but what they are doing is truly great and not many people are able to do that .

Here is one couple who has understood that death exists and accepting that it is a part of our lives and then dealing with it is makes our lives on earth even more worth it.

Continuing this chain of thoughts was a movie that I saw " Driving miss daisy " . The movie is about a old woman , who suddenly realizes that she is too old to drive . But she does not want to give up on being the independent woman that she has been all her life and ask around for help . She resists being given a car and driver , but eventually starts warming up to the idea that it is not bad to ask around for help .

Seeing that movie I suddenly realized that I am going to be that old and senile one of these days, I will constantly need someone's help , will no longer be able to do everything I wish to , I will forget stuff and I might get stuck in a one bedroom apartment with not many people around me .
Does this scare me ..sure it does , I love my youth and want to stay in it for ever . But that is not the natural way of life and I think the best way to deal with it is to be aware of it . Everything in nature starts with a seed, becomes a sapling , a full grown tree and then dies and so it is going to be with us too . A lot of times we get frustrated with our elders that they do not understand our ways of life , but we always forget that we will have to be in there shoes one of these days and it might mean all the same things for us then .

The Bhagwad geetha sums this up

"Death is as sure for that which is born as birth is for that which is dead . Therefore greave not for that which is inevitable "


t said...

you are getting too far into the future than necssary. it again launches you into a thought process, where you miss enjoying the present. live in present

Ms.T said...

You got me wrong , thinking about it this way actually makes me think about the present even more , cause I cherish the present even more ..

Ritu said...

My dad often says 'Death is a process, not an event'. Our body cells grow and develop till 25-30 years of age, and after that we start dying everyday biologically. It depends on how well you shape this process and how much you enjoy it :)