Have you ever pondered on thoughts about death? No, I don’t mean suicidal thoughts, I mean thoughts of this inevitable conclusion.
If you’re having thoughts about death, congratulations. You’re a normal human being. We all think about death from time to time, wondering what it will be like and wondering how painful the process will be. Yes, we think about this life’s conclusion in many ways.
A deeper look at death
But, let us look deeper at the causes of our tendency to think about death and ways to handle those uncomfortable thoughts.
There are thoughts which transcend the pain and finality of death, wouldn’t you think? Death is more than just the sad end and more than just the worst situation. There are a few ways we can look at these death meditations.
1. Death as afterlife
First off, many people see death as a doorway to the afterlife, whatever that may be. Here, there will be no focus on any denominations or spiritualities, only the mention that some believe that death is not the end.
These thoughts about death can be both healthy and unhealthy, depending on how you see this transition. For example: even if you believe there is an afterlife, you should still spend time enjoying every moment to its fullest. You cannot take money or possessions with you, either way, afterlife or not.
2. Death as finality
These thoughts concerning death can be dark, harsh and yes, they can be unforgiving. Some believe that death is the end, and afterward, there is nothing. If you believe this way, it’s also normal and fine.
The important aspect of this belief is to understand if death means the complete and utter end, then it’s most important to enjoy, travel, love, and fulfill everything your heart desires. After all, this is the only chance you will get.
3. Appreciating mortality
We soon start to appreciate our mortality, when pondering on death, For some, immortality is the dream, but for others, the fragile mortality is so much more beautiful.
Take, for instance, the flower, it will not live forever, but isn’t it beautiful? Our lives are much like lovely flowers, we bloom and greet the world and then we leave as nature intended.
This mortality is natural and reminds us that we are part of everything which surrounds us. This is also a popular thought about death.
4. Wishing for immortality
Unfortunately, wishing for immortality is not healthy, unless you’re a scientist working on some ground-breaking technology to further the studies on telomeres (thought to be the answer to immortality, by the way).
Otherwise, death is coming, and dwelling on immortality, in my opinion, is just a waste of time. Remember, time is running out. For those obsessed with immortality, thoughts concerning death might liberate a few misconceptions about our role in this world. Just a thought…
5. Obsessive thoughts
Having obsessive thoughts about death borders suicidal intentions, but I’m not going in that direction. There is this place between suicidal thoughts and just obsessing over death which brings us down but keeps us living out of fear.
That’s just what it is, honestly, it’s the fear of death, which has turned into an absolute obsession. Being afraid of death, but not focused on immortality can leave us in a perpetually dismal place.
How can we deal with death thoughts like these?
In order to deal effectively with thoughts on death, we must understand how each of the categories above affects our lives.
Do we think about the afterlife? Do we dwell on immortality on earth? Dealing with death in a healthy manner will depend on how we think, basically. So, I will try my hardest to break it down for you.
1. A healthy perspective of the afterlife
If you think about death as the afterlife, then you’re probably a spiritual person of some sort. Whether you believe in God or many Gods, you will see death as an elevation, a promotion, or a different state of being.
While some may see this belief as egotistical or delusional, spiritualists and believers find peace with this idea of death. Overall, It’s healthy as long as it doesn’t become fanatical to the point of imposing on the beliefs of others.
2. No beliefs, no problem
There are many people who believe death is just the end. They believe in darkness, finality, and the great big….well, nothing. These non-believers seem pretty happy for the most part, because they have come to terms with how they believe, or don’t’ believe, however you look at it.
So, unless they are falling into depression, they may be completely content to do everything they can before the end arrives. It’s just that simple, and it’s okay too.
3. Is appreciating mortality healthy?
Whether we believe in the great beyond or not, we can still appreciate the here and now. Many people, coming from all walks of life, have learned to love their mortality.
Sometimes thoughts of death can get overwhelming, even in this appreciation and this is when help is needed. When these thoughts become intrusive, it’s best to get support from others who have learned to appreciate the finality of their being.
Many times, they can explain the importance of the cycle of life, and how we are all a part of a larger picture. This helps us understand that pleasure and suffering are part of the whole deal.
4. Immortality, good or bad
While there are studies being conducted on immortality, it can be quite unhealthy to put all your eggs in this basket. Why? Because as of now, we’re still dying, and we’re still dying at around the same age as we were a few decades ago.
So obsessing over immortality is not really a healthy move. It’s better to see immortality as something hoped for. Just remember, some of us would rather live and die, instead of hanging around forever. So, to each his own.
5. Keep a check on obsessive thoughts
Death thoughts that become obsessive can also become dangerous. Sitting around with friends and pondering on the death process – the pain, the decomposition of death – is just not healthy at all.
I’ve seen this through those obsessed with speaking to the dead and sleeping in the cemetery wondering about how it feels to be underneath the earth. You see, even what I am saying is probably taking you to an uncomfortable place. This is my point.
These thoughts grow and can potentially cause serious depression. All I am saying is just be careful not to fall too far into the pit of darkness.
What are your thoughts on death?
Yes, there are many unhealthy ways to look at death, but yet, there are also healthy outlooks as well. Thoughts pertaining to death can be scary and overwhelming, but they don’t have to be taboo. Please share your opinion and let’s talk.
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This Post Has 6 Comments
I don’t have particularly obsessive thoughts but I sometimes cringe at the thought of being in a box and buried or being burned. I know I won’t feel any of this (or at last I hope not) but still, the thought makes me cringe
I sometimes cringe at this too, John. It’s just a fact that’s never really positive. As I have a bit of claustrophobia, it’s especially difficult to dwell on the box thing. I used to cringe about worms and insects, but after laying on the ground one day several years ago and letting insects crawl on me for about 30 minutes, I seem better. I know that sounds strange, but I often do odd things to understand life a little better. I even used to read a book about the process of death. I read it over and over until I was okay with it.
The thoughts of death aren’t easy for some of us, and that’s okay.
As you say, we’ve all thought about death. What I’ve not done is become either depressed or elated about it. Concerning an afterlife (or some kind of afterlife), I do not think it possible if you believe what you see as reality. It has to be what you see is an image of reality. And second, I believe an afterlife is only possible if the universe is conscious. From ancient wisdom to modern science, they are both saying these two statements are not only possible, but in some cases probable. This makes me much more comfortable.
Don, I like your way of seeing things. I have often tried to discount the afterlife, but I cannot do this. I keep coming back to it and feeling its effect upon me. Not to bring religion into this, but I do believe in God. I never want to force my beliefs on others, but I am okay admitting the fact. I respect what people say and believe because I find it incredibly interesting. There’s something that many people don’t know. You can have your own beliefs and find interest and respect in others. I try to do this. I think there is so much we do not know, and we may never know. I am okay with this as well.
I have a friend that is dieing with cancer, they have taken him off meds and sent him home, I and another friend have breakfast with him every Saturday morning, I look at him and think of the many faces of death, I will miss him but I know it is the best at this point in his life because of what he is going through, I feel he will be in gods kingdom and I will be with him again someday, as a freind told me once dieing is not bad it is the first day of your salvation,how true this is
My mother and my uncle both died of cancer. It is one of the worst things to witness, and more so to go through, I imagine. You can find strength in the things you’ve told me here, and I am sure you will. I think this also gives you the desire to live the best life you can and always be kind to others.
Thank you for reading