“For what is it to die but to stand naked in the wind and to melt into the sun?
And what is it to cease breathing, but to free the breath from its restless tides, that it may rise and expand and seek God unencumbered?
Only when you drink from the river of silence shall you indeed sing.
And when you have reached the mountain top, then you shall begin to climb.
And when the earth shall claim your limbs, then shall you truly dance.”
― Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet
I watched a man take his last breaths yesterday. He was out jogging and collapsed. I only found out later that he didn’t make it. It affected me, to say the least, I watched as his skin turned blue, his eyes fluttered and his body flopped. At the time I didn’t know that he was on his last legs, but I thought about him and I thought about death.
I have spent the last two and a half years studying death. I have had my own share of staring death in its face. When my son went to live with God, I thought about it a lot. I try not to dwell on his last day but I’m often bombarded by its brutality.
Many see death as the end of the road, I never have. Some even see it as a terrible tragedy, and while I would never want to understate the enormity of the suffering of people left behind, I don’t see it as a tragedy. John O’donohue says in his poem “On the death of the Beloved”…”Though your days here were brief, your spirit was live, awake, complete.”
Through studying near-death experiences and shared death experiences I have come to understand the beauty and majesty of death. The details don’t always look beautiful to the physical eyes and though it can contain much suffering near the end, I have come to believe what Rumi says “death is our wedding with eternity”.
Having read many great poet’s interpretations of death has given me great comfort. I cannot see death as finality, no matter which way I look at it.
Many people don’t want to talk of death because it is a hard subject but like Kahlil Gibran said “life and death are one.”
I would recommend a book called “lessons from the light” by Kenneth Ring if anyone is interested in discovering more about near-death experiences, it changed my life…
…when God came to take him home,
he knew he’d never been alone,
and in the fading of his sight,
his body turned to black and white…
on thresholds of another world,
time stood still, and truth unfurled,
where there is no such thing as fear
just recollections of all the years,
in gatherings of great joy,
the simple pleasures of a humanoid,
and when his breath was no more
he knew the joy of heaven’s encore,
he floated back to ecstatic light,
where wounds are healed and souls are bright
and now his sups eternal love,
he’s up above,
soaring through the azure skies
and on the wings of butterflies…
his colors evanesced from this earth
and he blossomed into joy’s rebirth,
waking up in fields of flowers,
he’d harnessed his superpowers…
a celebration of eternal life,
safe in the arms of the Divine…