Grief & Loss Information


Cultivate a Friendship with Death


Why We Fear Death

"Men fear death as children fear to go in the dark." - Bacon

There may be a thousand reasons why we fear death, but most of all we fear death because we fear the unknown, and death is an unknown entity to most people. We fear that dying may be painful and we do not know what will happen to us at the point of death.

Some people fear death because they imagine the dying process to be very painful. Death is not painful. In fact, death is often very peaceful and silent even for those suffering from cancers or other terminal illness.

When the physical body is deteriorating day by day from a terminal illness, and pain arises from superficial wound such as bed sores, or deep pain such as bone or nerve pain, death may even be a welcome relief for the sufferer.

We need to distinguish the pain of the physical body from the process of dying. The dying process is a distinct process that is separate from the deterioration of the physical body. At the point of death, there is no pain.

What happens at death is the cessation of the breath and all other physiological functions of the physical body. The heart stops pumping and the blood circulation stops moving. The body stops generating heat, and thus progressively turns cold.

For those who believe that we are more than just a physical body, and that we are in fact spiritual beings, the dying process means much more than just physical death. Death is just a natural process that allows us to discard the physical body as we move into the spiritual realm.

Since our fear of death is due to the fact that we do not know or understand death, it makes sense to familiarise ourselves with it. The more we understand death, the less we fear it. We should therefore cultivate a friendship with death, and be totally familiar with it, just as we are familiar with our friends.

We can cultivate a friendship with death in three simple steps:

1. Establish a link with God.
2. Cultivate a habit of acceptance, instead of blame.
3. Be a blessing to others.

Establish a link with God.

By establishing a link with God, we touch base with our own spirituality. God can be whatever you perceive God to be. For Christians, Muslims and Hindus, that may mean an omnipotent God. For Buddhists, it may mean the Buddha seed within. Atheists may have to come to term with their own spirituality.

Establishing a link with God means re-gaining your spirituality. It leads you closer to the spiritual aspect of yourself. Whether we accept it or not, we are more than just this physical body. When we die, we leave this physical body behind and only our spirituality continues on.

It is therefore essential for us to be familiar with our own spirituality. It is the only part of us that continues after death. This 'fact' is in accordance with all major religions.

Cultivate a Habit of Acceptance.

It is funny how when good things come to us, we readily accept them as though we deserve them or we have worked hard for them, yet when calamities befall us we quickly look for an external source to blame.

This is especially so when misfortunes such as terminal illness befall us. We may blame God, and later blame ourselves or people around us. We should cultivate a habit of neutrality regardless of whether good or bad things come our way. Otherwise, we can become very bitter about life when negative things happened. Looking for someone or something to blame only serve to prolong our own suffering. Death is an enemy when we resist it, but the moment we accept it, it turns into an ally.

However, cultivating a habit of acceptance does not mean not doing anything to correct or improve our conditions. It does not mean, for example, that when we are diagnosed with a terminal illness we do nothing about it. It is only sensible to seek treatment, if it is available to us. On the other hand, it also means we must know and accept when curative treatment is no longer possible. We fear death only when we refuse to face it.

Unfortunately, there are unscrupulous people who would take advantage of our fear of death to sell their 'cure'. In my experience with the terminally ill, I have come across countless stories of dying people being duped into parting with their savings and properties in the hope of achieving a cure.

Be a Blessing to Others.

This is our greatest and most reliable ally at the time of death.

Knowing that we have been helpful to others and that we have tried to live a blameless life takes away the fear of death. If our life has been an honest one, free of any conscious intention to hurt any living beings, we have nothing to fear when death approaches. Our mind will be at peace, undisturbed.

On the other hand, those who lead selfish lives, and harm others to get little advantages for themselves, find themselves imprisoned in tiny, dark cells when they move to the other side.

Therefore, while we still can, we should give our best to the world and to people around us. Lend a helping hand to others and help to lighten their loads. Bring joy to the joyless and comfort to those in need of comfort. There are many who are less fortunate than us. Count our blessings and be a blessing to others.

Tim Ong is a medical doctor with more than 14 years of experience in family medicine. He is the author of the online "Build From Within" ezine and "The Book of Transformation". He is also the webmaster of http://www.theselfimprovementsite.com


MORE RESOURCES:
This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news


Tallahassee.com

#GiveTLH: Lee's Place is 'here for everyone' with healing therapy
Tallahassee.com
Lee's Place is a counseling center that addresses the broad spectrum of grief, loss, and trauma. Lee's Place is the latest nonprofit being recognized for their life-changing work by the Beatitude Foundation and #GiveTLH, a community effort underwritten ...



PR Web (press release)

Mental Health Association to Host 33rd Annual Legislative Breakfast
PR Web (press release)
We want our staff and wider community educated and prepared to navigate the complex trauma that someone coming out of a trafficking situation might experience, including grief, loss, and issues with self-worth. Everyone in the community can learn to ...

and more »


Scranton Times-Tribune

Diocese taking steps to restore trust in church
Scranton Times-Tribune
Good and faithful priests, deacons and parish leaders have had to speak for a church that let its people down, even as they suffer with those entrusted to the care of others, bearing their own feelings of grief, loss, anger and pain. People of all ...

and more »


KREM.com

Spokane Valley coffee bar gives half off drinks to Freeman students, faculty on Thursday
KREM.com
... the strength you need to get you through your everyday life. Remember there is no time limit on grieving, so take your time to grieve. We all feel grief in many different ways. Know that God not only understands, He has experienced grief, loss and ...



Playbill.com

Syndicated Festival, Curated by SITI Alums, to Present 3 Weeks of New Works
Playbill.com
Adapted from Nelson's book of prose poetry by Ellenor Riley-Condit and Leigh Hendrix, Bluets is an intimate, philosophical look at grief, loss, desire, healing, and the color blue. Performances will run August 25– 29. Tiny Errors at the End of the ...



Pierce County Herald

Country Pastor column: Famine and harvest
Pierce County Herald
We each will experience deep seasons of grief, loss and heartache. But we will not be left alone in them. Even in seasons of seeming famine, God sends us our Ruths to abide with us until we enter another harvest season where abundance awaits, new life ...



Houston Chronicle

Author Jesmyn Ward tackles racism, grief, loss, ghosts of the past
Houston Chronicle
In Jesmyn Ward's latest novel, “Sing, Unburied, Sing,” the two-time National Book Award winner tells the coming-of-age story of Jojo, a young mixed-race boy growing up in a rural Mississippi Gulf Coast town and his complex relationships with his family ...



Pupils to honour area's war heroes with WWI project
News & Star
The personal letters, diaries and artefacts that will be on display show the love, excitement, fear, bravery, humour, grief, loss and longing that touched the lives of thousands throughout the area. Mr Gillon said: "This exhibition is about our ...



MDJOnline.com

Decatur resident is co-founder of Goodgrief app
MDJOnline.com
Through our app, we are normalizing talking about grief and we are saying, 'It is ok to feel all of those emotions and talking about grief, loss, your loved ones and life after that loss is all part of the process of moving forward,'” said Libertini ...



NewsOK.com

What to do in Oklahoma on Sept. 6, 2018: Check out the opening reception for Janet O'Neal's 'One Thousand Tears' at ...
NewsOK.com
Today's featured event: Check out the opening reception for "One Thousand Tears," an exhibition by Santa Fe, New Mexio-based artist Janet O'Neal, from 5 to 8 p.m. today at Artspace at Untitled, 1 NE 3. O'Neal is a 32-year veteran of the Santa Fe and ...


Google News

home | site map
© 2007