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Tuesday, June 16, 2020

PHILOSOPHICAL CONNOTATIONS OF DEATH


The other day, when I along with  some colleagues went  for  tea-break  at  our office  cafeteria, I couldn't forecast  that I had to return with a sad note.

When we were sipping tea in the warmth of Sun on that winter morning, suddenly a car ran over  a  puppy  in front of our eyes.  The puppy with its black and white shades was very cute.  It was playing leisurely  with its mother on the road when the incident happened. When the dogs were on  jolly mood, we were keenly observing and discussing how cute the four puppies  and we could not even have the slightest  hint  that death was looming large on one of them.

See how death touches any creature on Earth.  Some die naturally and some others forcefully and you can't say why one is  living above ninety and the other  is perished to death in mother's womb itself.  The animal kingdom being limited in their faculties  may not express the way we humans do. But the basic emotions are same.  My eyes welled up when I saw the mother dog making circles around its dead  puppy.

Who don't fear death?  The famous writer Khushwant Singh wrote in his book "Khushwantnama    that   "All that I hope for is that when death comes to me it comes quickly, without much pain, like  slipping away in sound sleep."

Like he cherished, he died at 99 in sleep on 20th March 2014.  Quoting a passage in the Mahabharat,   Khushwant  says that the greatest miracle of life is that while we know that death is inevitable, but no one really believes that he/she  too will die one day.

The Buddhist  monk  Dalai Lama when asked how one should face the death, he advises 'meditation'.  It is easy to say not to fear death, but very difficult to distil into wisdom.  The famous American Indian doctor and the New Age spiritual guru  Deepak Chopra says that the Prince of Death is just behind you. He experimented on 'death meditation' during his sojourn  in Thailand in 2011.  By doing Buddist way of doing meditation on death, Dr. Chopra says that you would constantly know the impermanence of life and certainty of death.

Life is like a passing stream.  At every point, there are endless lessons to learn, and lessons on death should not be   isolated.  We need to maintain  serenity even in the midst of turbulence. When the mind is prepared for the worst, whatever less damage happens in front of you,  can not grab your peace.