While we all know that on an intellectual level, in our culture we spend our lives not just ignoring that fact but actually keeping it hidden and distant. We all want to die peacefully when we are old, but we usually give it no more thought than that. But the sooner we face it as reality – and make peace with it – the better our lives will be.
But why, as a society, are we so afraid of death? Why, as author Eckhart Tolle has said, is death so hidden in our culture that it is illegal for most people to even see a dead body (outside a funeral home)?
To be sure, I'm not saying anyone should want to cut their lives short, or that we should rush our own deaths in any way. To the contrary, you may find that coming to true terms with your own mortality may actually make the days you spend on this earth that much sweeter.
I'm also not attempting to proselytize for any particular faith or form of spirituality – or even that you necessarily become a religious person if you are not. What I am saying is that we should all drop the stories of personal procrastination we all tell ourselves to avoid even thinking about our own demises.
Death may not come for 50 years – or it may come tomorrow (Michael Jackson and Billy Mays certainly were not expecting theirs either.) You just don't know.
Whenever it should come for you, come to a point within yourself where you are not terrified of it, or bitter about it. And remember that when your time comes – whenever that may be – you aren't the only one to die. Think of all those who went before you just this year.