Death and taxes: the only two things in life you can be sure about. It would be nice, wouldn’t it, if the two absolute certainties in life were love and light (which is true, but not commonly recognized). Death has been on my mind these days, as my mother prepares to meet her Maker.
You know that old saying—“No one gets out of here alive.” At least that’s true for 99.99%. There are stories of ancient seers and saints who live hundreds of years, or drop one body and immediately take another, or who live so long that they grow three whole new sets of teeth over the course of their lives. And then there are those who consciously leave their bodies in jeev samadhi—where the saint, whose time in a body is drawing to the close, enters a room and goes into a state of deep absorption in Spirit, and then the door to the room is sealed from outside. The saint’s energy remains in and around the body, and the body doesn’t decay over time. These sites become places of pilgrimage for those wanting to take in the living presence of the dead saint.
But what about you? Your image of death may be that of the Grim Reaper, the skeletal figure in a hooded black cloak, carrying a large scythe, who comes to collect the soul of the about-to-be-dead person. This particular image comes from 15th century England while other cultures around the world have their own personifications of death.
Have you imagined your own death? It is a very healthy practice for keeping your priorities straight. Envision yourself lying in bed, with no bodily strength left to lift an arm or utter a word; feel how all your attachments—to health, wealth, family and friends, to your favorite pair of slippers or the gold watch that was left to you by your revered grandmother—are all being severed. Can you relax into the feeling and let go? Really let go—of everything: of name and fame, of old lovers and new family, of the work that has consumed so much of your waking life. Let it all go, or try to.
See where your attachments are. Maybe you can imagine letting go of the body. Maybe it’s been causing you considerable pain for a very long time. But how about letting go of your attachment to your thoughts or to your emotions? Can you release the moment you looked into your partner’s eyes and felt like the world was complete? Can you jettison all your regrets so they don’t plague you in the afterlife?
Some years back a hospice nurse published a book called about the top regrets of the dying. These included wishing (1) “I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not what others expected”; (2) “I hadn’t worked so hard”; (3) “I’d had the courage to express my feelings”; (4) “I had stayed in touch with my friends”; and (5) “I’d let myself be happier.” Telling, isn’t it? The things you wished you had done while you had the chance. Note that the regrets listed don’t include “I wish I’d had the money to buy a BMW.” Priorities seem so clear in the face of death.
Of course, having the time to prepare for your death—to say goodbye to loved ones, to make sure your affairs are in order, to focus on your faith and spiritual connections—is probably preferable to getting hit by a bus and dying in the middle of the road. But it’s that possibility—that your own death may come suddenly and unexpectedly—that makes it so important to do a “letting go” practice at least once a year. As always, meditation is vitally important for learning how to center your consciousness on the present moment, so when death does come for you, you are not fearful, but are ready to accept whatever the moment brings.
I don’t bring up this topic to scare you, but to show the importance of preparing for death. Do you have a will, a living will, and a medical directive? That takes care of one level. Do you fear death is the end of everything? Examine your fears and beliefs and let go of whatever doesn’t serve you. Do you know the proper way to die so as to maximize your passage to the light? There is one, actually, and I’ll be teaching it at my next Video conference for my students in Level 1 of the LifeForce Energy Healing Program. (click here if you’d like to be part of my Level 1 Program where those monthly video calls take place)
These steps of preparation will allow you to go calmly into that “good night” knowing you have lived your truth, with no regrets, and a strong faith in the continuity of Spirit.