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Thursday, October 25, 2018

The Meanings of Death


The Meanings of Death

Death is a domain of the old: the elderly are often preoccupied with attitudes about death, and the inevitability of death. According to studies, the majority of the elderly wish to extend life for as long as possible, irrespective of their death anxiety level.

The Implications of Death

Life is a task-master: it teaches you how to survive. Death is also a leveler-of-man: it teaches you how to live. To appreciate life, you must come to grips with the reality of death, and, more importantly, with God.

Death Attitudes

For some people, due to the inevitability of death, they simply choose not to think about it in order to remain happy.

For others, in the imminence of death, there is often denial, which will gradually give way as aging continues until dying becomes more of a personal reality than an abstract fate.

Death Anxiety

Death anxiety is fear of death. It is fear of the pain of dying, fear of separation from loved ones, and fear of the unknown.

The level of death anxiety is determined by the following factors: projected inability to fulfill certain goals in the past (often accompanied by regret); perceived inability to accomplish certain goals in the future (work undone, relationship and business unfinished, or lifelong dreams unrealized); interpretation of the meaning of death, such as life after death, or death as an escape from pain and misery.

But, irrespective of the level, death anxiety is unhealthy, because it robs you of the joys of living in the present moment; if you are afraid to die, you may also be afraid to live—and thus depriving yourself of successful aging.

Coping with Death

Death is inevitable. Spiritual wisdom shows how one can cope with death or the imminence of death.

Positive meanings of life and death


Positive meanings of life and death provide one with the motivation to go on living, and therefore adopting a healthy lifestyle in the latter part of one's life.

Positive meanings of life and death also enable one to embrace an attitude of acceptance of the inevitability of death, and thus instrumental in making the most out of the rest of one’s life to live well and to die well.

Positive meanings of life and death are effective coping mechanisms to deal with death and dying.

Decreasing focus on self

Decrease your focus on your life accomplishments, especially your contributions to society and mankind.

Accept the inevitability of human mortality. In other words, let go of fame and fortune, and all material attachments in life, especially the ego-self.

Stephen Lau
Copyright©2018 by Stephen Lau

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