A natural part of life is death. If we consider life as a celebration, where does life’s end fit into that picture? We are conditioned to believe death is a bitter end, we often talk about death as a “battle lost” but if death is truly a natural part of life, just like the day is always followed by the night, , it’s actually a matter of natural progression – like the change from dusk to evening. How can we honour life as a celebration at the time of death?
1. Embrace Death for Better Living with a Change of Perspective
Life often feels like a vast stretch of discomfort, hurdles, and challenges punctuated by moments of sheer joy and love. We fight to survive, it is our instinct to want to keep living. We have passed that ancient drive from our unconscious minds to the forefront of our brains, actively feeling uncomfortable when we are presented with our own mortality. A change of perspective will allow us to celebrate our lives while we have them, and view death as a natural progression rather than a somber loss we should mourn and avoid at all costs.
2. Living with Purpose will add meaning to Death
What is your purpose for living? That is an age-old question that each person needs to answer for themselves. Some find purpose in serving others, while others chase their dreams. Acquaint yourself with the aspects of life that give you the most fulfillment – that’s where your purpose lies. Many people do this in the form of a bucket list – a list of adventures to have at some point in your life. The problem is that people think the list needs to be long and complicated. In actual fact, a bucket list needn’t be grand. At your life’s end, it won’t matter if you climbed the highest mountain. Maybe getting to know your long-lost cousins would give you greater purpose.
3. Acknowledging the Achievement of Living at the time of Death
Every single person alive can attest to the difficulties of life. It’s like one long obstacle course. And then, like a warm breeze melting away your stresses, it’s over. It’s not all for nothing. It’s meaningless. Each experience helped to paint your life with vibrant colours. The time of death would only be a sad occasion if that glorious canvas of colours was thrown out – but if we marvel at the artistry of the life, we can agree that the work of art is finally complete and ready to be appreciated.
4. Planning a Memorial to Celebrate Life
The fear of death starts with cultural conditioning. Perhaps if death wasn’t such a taboo topic, we could celebrate a person’s life when it ends. Undoing that cultural narrative starts with changing our rituals. A memorial can be an uplifting occasion. There is a rising trend in which people are abandoning the black wear, the somberness of the occasion, and even livening up the venues. Instead, people are starting to come together to laugh, sing, share memories, and laugh together, all while remembering with great love, the life that has departed.
Nothing in this World is Permanent, so Celebrate its Joy
For those who comfortably embrace the reality of death as part of life, death often inspires a more conscious way of living. It highlights the transient nature of everything we know for sure because it will all fade away with time, eventually. That is the very core of life – it is only a temporary state of being. In that time, we paint a tapestry with our experiences and the completion of that work of art should be celebrated. It is a mighty achievement, and not a battle lost.