Talking about death (or life?)

There are some things in life I do not understand.

We talk about life so much and we are so scared to talk about death. Because of the fear and its inevitability.

I think about death often. Whenever I speak of death at home or say something like death is inevitable, my parents either walk away or give me an eye & tell me to shut up :blushes:

Looking at death from a different perspective

We should normalize speaking about death. There are so many stories of how a near-death experience change people's perspectives & lives.

After having an accident at the age of 19, George Lucas who later went on to direct Star Wars —

Everyday now is an extra day.

George Lucas

As much as I would like the existential euphoria that comes with it, I don't really want a near-death experience. However, I do somehow want to remember it is coming for me.

Here, Austin Kleon talks about reading obituaries. Obituaries are like near-death experiences, reading them is way for us think about death while keeping it at an arm's length.

They are not about death, they are about life. They are heroic and should be taken inspiration from.

Thinking about death every morning makes me want to live.

Austin Kleon

Death sounds scary?

Let's answer, why death sounds scary first.

A friend talks about this:

It is not my death that scares me. I know everybody is going to die someday. It is indeed inevitable. It is also harmless to me that is the exactly why I don't fear it. What scares me is the death of my loved ones. The fact that they will die and I will have to keep living with a void in my life.

Essentially, when I think about death. I think about the people I love, people I care about. What happens to them?

The more reason to cherish people that know us. No one will remember you, no matter how great you were. You only exist in the memories of people who know you. They give meaning to your existence.

Vivek Namaye

Now, if talking about death sounds scary, consider this:

One day you'll be dead. Most of us prefer to ignore this most basic fact of life, but thinking about our inevitable end has a way of putting everyday in perspectives.

The paradox


Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarassment or failure — these things just fall away in the fear of death, leaving only what's truly important.

Steve Jobs

Essentially, the fear of death could be leveraged to live a satisfied life. A paradox, indeed.


After all this, I still wonder: Is death a motivation for living purposely and intensely?

Let me reframe - Is death a non-toxic motivator for living purposely and intensely?

Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked.

Steve Jobs