I have been very fortunate in life in that I never came close to death or what dying feels like.
I am however curious about the subject of death and life itself. What I think about death and life has been deeply shaped by works of Alan Watts. His ability to transcribe the mysticism and ideas of Zen and Buddhism through stories and beautiful and understandable metaphors is nothing short of amazing.
One thing I observed, both through my own personal experience and the things I've read is that I am not my body. I am not my ego. The so called ego death, I think shows that I is an illusion. The awareness I feel of my body, my thoughts, my memories is a construct of my own mind shaped by experience. Ego death, which by some is described as suppression of memory shows that there is more to life than I and my life. There is an eternal energy present that underlies all experiences in this universe. You can feel the presence of this eternal energy through deep meditation or taking a short trip with psychedelics.
Again, these are just my thoughts on the matter shaped by my own experiences in life and the things I've read and seen. You can never be sure about these things. And more importantly, human language seems too limited to express these ideas and thoughts. You are forced to use metaphors and stories so we can relate the experience to something we know. This is more apparent with psychedelics where trying to describe a psychedelic trip to someone who never experienced it is impossible.
One advantage that this view of the world brings. The view that everything that happens in the world has no inherent meaning and you are the only person who can give meaning to anything. The view that life and experience as you know it is temporary and can be easily taken away from you. It makes you stop fearing death and anything else that you have no control over. So you can focus on what you think is important to your life and not worry about what would happen if this happened.. or if only had this happened.. and start to live now.
- Whether you fight it or go with the flow, the same result will appear, the body will dissolve until all that is left is the consciousness.
- You mistakenly call your consciousness your soul. But you are right, it was ripped from your body because you fail to realize that they are not the same. You are life having a human experience, not a human having a life experience. You felt it, you were not alive or dead, you just were.
- It is one of the most remarkable things that in all of the biological sciences there is no clue as to the necessity of death. If you say we want to make perpetual motion, we have discovered enough laws as we studied physics to see that it is either absolutely impossible or else the laws are wrong. But there is nothing in biology yet found that indicates the inevitability of death. This suggests to me that it is not at all inevitable and that it is only a matter of time before the biologists discover what it is that is causing us the trouble and that this terrible universal disease or temporariness of the human’s body will be cured. - Richard Feynman