Our body is like an apartment. We don’t know how long we’ll be allowed to stay in it but we tend to live as if we’ll live in it forever. We have the tendency to abuse it as if our mortality is far-fetched. We tend to accumulate so much, forgetting the fact that we can’t take anything with us when we die.
In life, we are faced with two choices: we either build our life on a solid and deep spiritual foundation or build it on worldliness. When we go for the first option, we cultivate the relationship between the soul and the Supreme Person. When we choose the latter, we allow ourselves to be governed by materialism not really knowing that it will bring us nothing but suffering as satisfying the material body can never satisfy the needs of the soul.
The material existence is like an ocean. You’re not safe in it until you see land. The Titanic was touted as unsinkable yet it sunk and the tragedy claimed more than a thousand lives. We could die anytime from diseases, disasters and from acts of our fellow men – accidental or deliberate. News of tragedies and our own brushes with death change our perspective and make us rearrange our priorities. We suddenly get consumed with the desire to live life to the fullest. We make amends. We become more caring. We get reminded of what’s truly important in our lives and that our day-to-day moments are priceless and unrepeatable. We make the most of each day through our encounters with our loved ones so that we would have as few regrets as possible. We commune more with the Supreme Person.
When we see hale and hearty old people, we feel happy about their being able to live a long healthy life. We’re especially impressed when we see some of them still having the strength and the stamina for running. The thought that we don’t want to entertain is that they’re actually running away from death. We don’t like to dwell on such a topic because it’s morbid and unsettling and it incites fear of the unknown. But there’s nothing to fear about death. The fear of death only identifies with the death of the material body that wears and tears and which we tend to falsely identify the soul with. We are not our material body. We are spirit souls. The soul is eternal and death is unnatural to the soul.
How do we make sure we’re prepared to face our death anytime? We prepare by strengthening our knowledge of who we are as spirit souls; hence, we should not build our life upon worldly things. What we should build is our relationship with our Maker, the Supreme Person. We should make the conscious effort to revive, renew and re-establish our connection with the Supreme Person however and whenever we can. We should cultivate spiritual knowledge and reorient our life toward spiritual living. Our choices in life should be directed by our answers to the question ‘What is the eternal value of what I’m doing now?’ We should upgrade our consciousness, not degrade it. We should practice meditation to find an inner joy and serenity that nothing, not even physical death, can destroy. We should be at peace with the thought of the death of our material body. There is no pain in leaving the material world if we have the inner peace, freedom and readiness to be with the Supreme Person.