Dead as Dead

Here’s a story. Two parents give birth to a beautiful baby. The baby gets older, goes to school, and makes some friends. Then it goes on to graduate, get a job, and establish a life of its own.  If it’s lucky it’ll meet someone special, get married, and have a baby of its own. The once baby will raise the new baby while it grows old and eventually… die. Sound familiar? Well that may be because I just described the majority of the human race. We’re born, we live for a bit, and then we die. That’s just a very natural part of life but weirdly enough it scares the shit out of people.

As crazy as it sounds, people actually fear death. Death is an unavoidable occurrence that happens once to every living being and ends them completely. Why would someone fear the inescapable truth that one day you will cease to exist and there is nothing you could do about it? Crazy. I personally reserve my fears for the really scary things like clowns, dying alone, and large men named Ivan. Why is it that people fear death so much? It almost seems childish. Once you’re dead you’re just dead. Hopefully, we were right about the whole God thing and you get to go to heaven which sounds great but if not who cares? If you die, then that’s it. You’re worm food. Dead as dead and you can’t be scared, sad, or confused about it because you’re too dead to feel.

All kidding aside death isn’t as scary as we make it. Frankly, it seems more like a positive thing.  Death actually defines life because nothing is truly alive unless it eventually dies. People, animals, plants, stars, planets. They all have an expiration date which is kind of beautiful in a fucked up way. The fact that our lives are limited is the very thing that makes life beautiful. Death’s inevitability gives life meaning and forces us to choose what to spend our limited time on and care about.

The  fact that we can’t live forever means we can’t do everything we want. It makes us prioritize certain things over others and choose what matters to us which is the very definition of human values. What we prioritize, what we find important, things that we choose to care about. Without the inevitability of death or an end, there’d be nothing to care about. Our limited lives force us to care, and caring is something we wouldn’t be able to do if death weren’t a factor.

Death isn’t scary, good, or bad. It’s necessary. Life would be pointless if we lived forever but death gives us purpose. Being afraid to live rather than fearing death is far more plausible. Instead of running off from the undeniable truth try accepting it. Accept the fact that one day you will die. Accept that your time is limited and therefore valuable. Accept the beauty in death and the meaning it brings into your life. Once you’ve done that, allow the prospect of death to drive you. Push forward and make each moment count. Find out what’s worth spending your limited time on. Live your life to the fullest.

 

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