‘Oh, I bless you with a long life, but anyway, you will die one day.’
Yogi, mystic, visionary but above all a great spiritual teacher- Sadhguru bestows both life and wisdom in this one brief, all- encompassing blessing which reminds us that death is the world’s greatest equaliser and mortality is a fact of life. The knowledge of impending death can plunge even the hardiest of souls into a dark pool of fear and misery. Contrarily, in Death- An Inside Story, Sadhguru points out-
‘Calamities, especially like death and illness, are a tremendous opportunity to look beyond the limitations of what you normally understand as life.’
What if death was not the catastrophe it is made out to be but an essential aspect of life, rife with spiritual possibilities for transcendence? For the first time, someone is saying just that!
In this unique treatise-like exposition, Sadhguru expounds on the more profound aspects of death that are rarely spoken about. And in doing that he offers an expansive perspective on death which has the power to change how we understand our existence in this universe. He says-
I was born like you, I eat like you,
sleep like you and I will die like you
but the limited has not limited me
Life’s bondages have not bound me
Here are 5 ways Sadhguru can help you change your perspective on death-
‘Moving from the physical to the non-physical is the greatest moment in your life. So is it not very important that you make it happen most gracefully and wonderfully?’
The darkness that clouds our thoughts at the idea of death colours our experience of it. Sadhguru nudges us gently to look away from the repetitive activities of life and approach death as a unique experience. It is that very last moment of life when we transcend the limitations of our physical body. It can be done just once and it is the last thing we will do. And so we can choose to do it with grace.
‘If you want to make use of the opportunity that death presents, you cannot approach it with fear. This is not something that you can handle all of a sudden at that moment. So it is important that on many levels we prepare for death beforehand.’
Even though we all fear death, we must prepare ourselves for a certain day when we would experience it. Shunning the thought of death or cowering behind a wall of terror is not the best way to go. Sadhguru reminds us to learn from nature. When wild animals sense their impending demise, they withdraw from food and find a place where they just sit. This preparation is a way to bring dignity to death. If you bring in death gracefully your disembodied phase will not be hellish.
‘If you develop the necessary capability, whichever way death comes, you can maintain your awareness and die well. If you have not lived a life of awareness, the possibility of you suddenly becoming aware in an extreme situation like death does not arise at all.’
In one of the most enlightening discussions on death, Sadhguru makes a startling revelation. He explains that a man who dies in a violent encounter is in no way in any kind of disadvantage compared to one who is dying of disease or old age. Any man who has lived a life of awareness can die well as there will be that moment between injury and death where that awareness brings acceptance. Some people live well only in good situations but those who live well whichever kind of situation comes to them, die well, no matter what kind of death comes to them.
‘The fear of death has come to us because we have gotten deeply identified with this body. Our identification with this body has become so strong because we have not explored other dimensions.’
Sadhguru explains that death is as natural as life is and therefore, a morbid fear of death is unnatural. It demonstrates how we have lost touch with reality. We believe that we came with this body and that thought begins to define us. The flesh we hold so dear is what we gather in the womb after our conception and it is this flesh we shed when the end comes. To be aware of this reality we must remember to differentiate between ‘This is mine.’ and ‘This is me.’
‘The fear of death is about what you think you will lose by death. The fear of death is essentially the fear of loss.’
The fear of losing all that we know and love limits our experiences. People who have expanded their range of thought in the pursuit of awareness are convinced that they came with nothing and therefore, would lose nothing from death, so they welcome it without fear. Sadhguru encourages us to go beyond the limitations of the body with sadhana and to use our life to know that which is beyond the physical.
At a time when the world is torn asunder with disease, violence and hate, Sadhguru exhorts us to remember the fragility of life. He says, ‘Those who are constantly aware of the mortal and fragile nature of Existence do not want to miss even a single moment; they will naturally be aware. They cannot take anything for granted; they will live very purposefully. Only people who believe they are immortal can fight and fight to death.’
To confront your fears and rise above them, read Death- An Inside Story!