Need we be so afraid of death?
Why do you fear death? Death is nothing to be afraid of. Of course we lose contact with our near and dear ones. But that happens in life also as we move away from our friends and relatives. We may feel sad for some days but we always recover.
Every day we die. Yes, what is sleep? Is it not a form of death? But then are we afraid of sleep? We all know that we cannot do without sleep. It helps us refresh ourselves for the next day and also helps us forget many unpleasant things. Similiarly death delivers us from great pain when our bodies become old and diseased. It also delivers us from the burdens of our present life and gives us a fresh start. Without death life would become extremely horrible and painful. Death is necessary.
People who have faith in God and apply His teachings in life have absolutely nothing to fear from death. Such people are taken to the highest realms after death and often do not have to take another birth. Repeating Gods name and remembering Him at all times burns our samskaras and without samskaras we cannot have another birth.
How to prepare ourselves for death? The first step is that we must realise that death is inevitable, every living being has to die. The second step is to meditate on death. We must think of death at times and realise that one day we must leave everything and go away. Thinking in this manner will take away all our undue attachments and prepare ourselves for the ultimate journey. Sincere Buddhist monks live as if the very next moment may be their last. So they don't get attached to anything and are always mentally prepared to let go of everything. They realise that everything in this world including all relationships are impermanent. What only matters is the ultimate truth, what we call God.
So cultivate renunciation and detachment. Do your work but don't unnecessarily get mentally involved in anything. Never think that anybody else will not survive if you are not around. We see so many people die everyday but does the world stop after they are gone? The world will go on smoothly regardless of whether we are alive or dead.
So never think that we have to complete some work before going. We will definitely try to do everything properly while we are alive but if we have to go without completing the work well and good, somebody else will complete it, we should not worry. Many people die painful deaths thinking what will happen to their near and dear ones after they are gone or who will complete their work. But all these thoughts are unnecessary. God is running this world and not us. Live every moment prepared to leave everything and go. If you can do this you have prepared yourself for death.
A small child one day asked his mother why death was so painful. His mother said that death was not painful at all. The surprised child asked how. The mother asked him to sit in a chair and hold the handles extremely tightly. She then tried to lift the child from the chair. It was an extremely painful experience for the child who cried a lot. Next the mother asked the child to sit in the chair but not hold the handles. Now she was able to lift him easily without having to hurt him.
Almost all of us are like the child holding tight to the handles of life. That is why death is so painful for us. But to those who live the life but don't clutch the handles, death is just going from one plane of existence to another. There is absolutely no pain.
So don't cling on to life. Enjoy life as if you have come on a vacation here. When you go for a vacation to a beautiful place you enjoy the experience immensely. But you are not very sorry when you have to come back. This is because all throughout the vacation you knew that you have come only for a few days. You also know that your real place is at home where you are returning. So during life also remember always that this vacation is also for a few days. We all have to return home to Gods feet.
Send letters to God regularly in the form of prayers. Then when you face death you will find that God is waiting for you with a smiling face ready to take you home, where you really belong.
So never fear death. Prepare for it!
God bless you,
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