Preparing for dying

Hong Kong, China.

I have been contemplating about death and impermanence last days. As I shared in my previous post my zen buddy James Baye died from a hiking accident on full moon. But 2 days ago I also received disturbing news from a close Dutch friend who was admitted into the hospital during the venus transit with very strange but very serious symptoms that appeared to be of neurological nature. Again this was a guy who lives like me: meditation, fitness, awareness, healthy food, the works. He is a coach, healer, meditation teacher and shaman. He is recovering but still..

What. The. Fuck?

I fell on my face in India because of some sort of energy inside me unleashed itself and I needed to get stitched, James died and my Dutch friend spent 3 days in the hospital and has not fully recovered yet from nobody-knows-what. Where exactly did the Mayan calendar say that the good guys would have a hard time surviving the transition into a new age? I thought it was supposed to be the other way around.

I am not really blaming the planets  or the Mayans. I don’t know why strange things are happening to me and my friends and coming up with possible explanations is not that helpful. I feel it merely creates an illusion of understanding which creates an illusion of safety and control.

We don’t control when we are born, we don’t control where and who our parents are and we don’t control when we die. The only thing we can have some sort of influence on is our relationship with life, with the present moment.

The sad and painful incidents and accidents that happened to my friends can also serve as a reminder of the preciousness and mysteriousness of life. We come and we go. Death is inevitable and we better be prepared. I think this makes sense but in reality most human beings are trying to deny or even defeat death. We want to stay alive as long as possible because we fear the unknown. But this fear dominates our lives terribly. There are so many things we don’t even dare to say, think or do because the outcome is insecure. We try to stick to what we know. And if there is something we don’t know it is death. So we try to stay away from death as far as we can.

Are you prepared to die? I feel it is a good question. Most of us have many things unsaid. Because we try to hide many things and aspects about ourselves from ourselves and others we carry secrets. What would you like to resolve with your parents before you die? What do you want to share with your children before you go? I think it comes down to really opening our hearts. Opening up is dying in a way because every time you discover new territory your old reality dies forever. This is why it is scary and this is why it prepares you for dying. By devoting to opening up you come closer and closer to a point where you feel that everything is said and felt tand you are free to go.

Am I prepared to die? A true warrior is fearless and willing and able to look death in the face. I had many experiences were I felt that something shifted or died inside me. All these experiences were enriching or enlightening. So on some level I have a deep knowing that every death brings rebirth. But if you put me in front of a firing squad right now I would probably be very scared, terrified even. Let’s be honest, I like to live a lot longer and I don’t like the pain that comes from the mourning of a loved one. But I can honestly say that everybody that I love knows that I love him or her. I asked those who I hurt for forgiveness and I take every opportunity that arises to clean op some karma of the past. I have apologised in a bar to a woman who I bullied as a child. Actually, I had those talks more than once since I have bullied quite a few people. It is tough to forgive myself for that so I need to apologize.

Start preparing your death today because you don’t know when it will come. Don’t assume that everything is clear around you, don’t assume that you are forgiven for the suffering you caused (don’t assume that you never caused any suffering either). Practice saying sorry because it heals the other and liberates you from guilt. Practice saying ‘I love you’ because it will open hearts and creates connection. Practice saying “thank you’ because it allows gratitude to flow and smoothes the ego.

On the right you see a water crystal shaped by gratitude. Check “The Hidden Messages of Water” from Dr. Emoto. He wrote ‘thank you’ on the glass. You are 70% water. I makes sense to practice love, gratitude and forgiveness. It will make you into a beautiful person on the inside. Literally.

Imagine you practicing like this every day for the rest of your life. How nicely prepared will you be when death comes. No loose ends, no grudges, no unfinished business. You will be ready, even if death comes unexpected. You can go with soft eyes and an open heart, ready for the next adventure.

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