What comes to mind when you hear this word?
For most, they imagine a single event or perhaps a process or incident leading to a single event such as a terminal illness or car accident.
What if I told you that death is something that happens within us regularly? That our society is so far removed from the concept of death that we have become blind to it being a routine occurrence.
I believe that we need to recognize death as a process of living, instead of just something that happens at the end of it. Let me give you the example of a grammatical period that we use to end every sentence – it takes many sentences to make a paragraph, many paragraphs to make a chapter and many chapters to make a book. The use of a period is subtle at the end of each sentence, obvious at the end of each chapter (but you know it’s not yet over) and dramatically clear at the end of each book – the dance of death within our bodies and souls is in parallel to this.
Human physiology and lifecycle also make an excellent example.
Every month the female body prepares to make new life – an egg is dropped from the ovary, travels down the fallopian tube and lands in the uterus with the goal of being fertilized. When its goal is not obtained (either by a layer of latex or otherwise), the egg dies. Punctuated like the end of a paragraph, a period appears. If there was no latex (or faulty latex), the egg may meet sperm and human life begins. However, the first months are precarious and often times miscarriage marks an abrupt and sudden ending – like the end of a chapter, this death is more profound and obvious.
On a more minute scale, cellular death happens every second of the day. There is a statement drifting around the internet saying that every 7-10 years all cells in the human body die and are replaced by new ones. Although there is debate as to the credibility of this statement, it is at least based on a very well known and scientifically proven process called apoptosis – a form of programmed cell death. When cells are no longer needed or pose a threat to the health of an organism, they die. We have many different kinds of cells in the human body, with varying life spans. This just goes to show that the concept of death is not only very real, but also a necessary part of healthy human physiology.
So if physiology has this profound presence of death on many levels, it has to have an impact on the emotional body as well.
It was Pierre Teilhard de Chardin who said, “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human experience”. Since we cannot separate our states of self – physical, mental, emotional, spiritual –all of these bodies must have cycles of death and renewal.
I offer you a personal example.
There was one day a few years ago that will stay with me forever. It was a day that stands out because it was so terribly horrific. It was a day when I simply ceased to function.
I awoke with a deep sense of dread and gloom weighing me down like a lead core had replaced my spine. Lying heavy in the bed, I felt paralyzed. I was scheduled to work later that day, so I eventually rolled sideways and into a standing position – I attempted to prepare for work. I made it to the kitchen sink, looked blankly at the stack of dishes needing to be put away; I picked up a dish towel. That’s as far as I got before collapsing forward over the sink and bellowing out a deep, low, and loud cry. The crying didn’t stop for many hours. An observer would have thought something unthinkable had occurred – a tragedy of epic proportions. However, when I called into work (still sobbing) to say I couldn’t come in, I reassured them that “nothing happened”.
So what caused this circumstance of sombreness? In this state of misery, I even found myself saying the words “I want to die” and “kill me” aloud. But the words were not true. I knew that I didn’t want to actually die, so why was I saying it?
It wasn’t me speaking. It was a different part of me saying these words – a ventriloquist called my subconscious was controlling the scene and I was but the puppet. I was the observer. These cries of death were a reflection of deep processing and not a literal plea to end my life. I was experiencing an emotional death. It was the evolution of my soul and spirit completing a cycle and making room for new growth.
Days previous to this, I had some deep emotional work done via the akashic records – a compendium of all your life’s thoughts, events, and emotions encoded in the non-physical plane. After this session, I went directly to work and had two crazy busy days without time to rest or process the experience. On the third day, my body halted me demanding time and space for assimilation of the emotional work. Like the physical body, which reaps the benefits of exercise during sleep, your emotional body also requires a time of rest.
Looking back, it is clear to me that a part of my soul died that day. Not in a bad way, but in a really good way. Sometimes good things come in deceiving packages. Like the female menstrual cycle, we must make way for new growth by first processing and then discarding the old.
Many people would have gone to the doctor needing to legitimize the experience with a label and/or perhaps a pill. We are not taught that experiences like this are okay, or that they are in fact normal. This experience was just that – an experience. Meaning, it did not last forever and it was an opportunity to learn and grow.
To me, death and dying are a normal and non-negotiable part of living.
Some people actually “die” on operating tables and are brought back to life. They are usually accompanied by a new outlook including a change of goals and priorities. In a brief instant, these people shift years of deeply set beliefs and ideologies into ones that are more in line with their true self.
You don’t have to literally die to receive this type of information – it’s always available if we choose to listen.
I am really comforted by the concept of death and knowing that it is necessary to write the storyline of my life. For it is through the outlook of death that I find strength to know that when things are difficult that they will indeed get better. The lens of death is an indication marking the progress and succession of life moving in a forward direction.
We cannot truly appreciate joy without also having lived through deep sorrow and tears. Fear allows us to practice courage and unabashedly bask in the winds of freedom. Your health would be taken for granted if you never stubbed your toe, reminding you to be thankful for every moment you are pain free in this human form.
Death can be subtle and it can be obvious. I invite you to accept the subtleties of its nature into your life and honor it as you would a stubbed toe – gently, softy, with nurturing care.
If you or someone you know could use support after a miscarriage, there is an e-course called “Maneuvering Through Miscarriage” available now.