Even Gods Envy Us!!



Every time I’m asked to talk about death, I’m reminded of Sir Henry James (The famous 19th century writer of ‘Wings of Dove’) and his last words which were “So here it is at last, the distinguished thing!”

I try to get deep into his mind and cogitate about what he must be thinking while lying on his bed counting his last breaths and with people (mostly the doctors) surrounding him. He named death as ‘the distinguished thing’, you can give it your own words when you face it. But one thing is for sure, death is bleak as a concept and often misunderstood. So much is said about death and so much is discussed by philosophers around the world but someone is yet to decipher the meaning of this five lettered word.

People are on the level of equality with respect to death. There are no experts on death for there is nothing to know about. No pictures come to mind.

For what I know there are 2 understandings of death.

2: Death as a fear to lose your loved ones.

“Yesterday I looked at my mom and this thought crossed my mind that I shouldn’t be too close to her for I cannot afford to lose her.”

People fear death. If not their death, it’s the death of their loved ones they fear.  Abraham Lincoln was a brave man. In affairs of state his valor and decision making prowess was rather appreciated. But he was a naive when it came to matters of life and death. While reading his famous biography ‘Team of rivals’ I couldn’t help but notice that concept of death frightened him. He had lost his mother (who died of milk sickness when he was 9 years old), his best friend Anne Rutledge (who died of Typhoid when he most needed a friend) and his son Willie Lincoln (who died at the age of 11). Concept of death wasn’t new to him but still a distinguished one.



When I talk about concept of death I am not implying on concepts of life after death or hell or heaven but pure death, that never ending silence, that unexpected tranquility.

One moment you are looking at a person laughing, cracking jokes and looking vivacious as a model who had just won a beauty pageant and the next moment you are looking at a corpse and just plain explainable silence.   

1: Death as an inspiration for life

There are two kinds of people ones who fear death and others who lie.

I know people who are not afraid of dying but are afraid of dying without doing something constructive. Death gives people a motive to live.

Even Gods envy us for this. We can die. Maybe happy or miserable but we have an ending. We can make something out of this small period of time we have before our deaths. In the end it is useful to think about death only to the point that it frees us to live fully immersed in the life we have yet to live.


In the end I would agree with all the Gurus and priests who preach around the world that we should accept our death with our arms open wide and with integrity. Of course we will, even a 10 year old would know that any other place would be better than the whorehouse we live in.


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