Death is not something that happens to you sometime in future. It’s happening to you all the time. If you are unaware, you are ignorant, it comes to you sometime – you do not know when, but it’ll come. If you are aware, in every moment both life and death are involved. If you as much as breathe little more consciously, you will notice with every inhalation there is life, with every exhalation there is death.
Death is not something that happens to you sometime in future. It’s happening to you all the time
If you are not getting the point – just do the next inhalation, and do not next exhalation, and do not take the next inhalation, you will get the point. Every moment, even beyond the breath, every moment it is happening. It’s like the ticking of the clock – life and death, life and death, life and death. It’s all the time happening. One who is aware of this will naturally become aware, there is no such thing as life and death. Life is death, and death is life – they are not different. It is only a question of the womb, the crawling out, growing up, taking the loan from the planet, and putting it back, but it’s just life or it’s just death. We need not have invented two words for this. It’s just one thing. We can call it ‘Da-life’, because they are not two different things.
For the ignorant death comes, for those who are aware death doesn’t come, death is
It is out of a very gross sense of unawareness about the life process – because the wonderful gifts that have been showered upon humanity, we are using them like toys – it feels this way. This mind, this brain capable of incredible things, but we are using it like a toy. I think people enjoy toys, isn’t it? A large percentage of humanity is so suffering the mind, that slowly it has become fashionable to teach you to become ‘no mind’. Took millions of years to evolve to this state of mental capability, now we are talking about ‘no mind’, because a ‘no mind’ is better than a crazy mind. But a conscious mind is a fabulous thing. Why would anybody want to give this up because they do not know how to handle it? If you knew how to handle it, if you knew how to handle it, you wouldn’t want to get rid of this.
People are seeking peace. I don’t know – if you walk straight on this pathway through the school, and beyond there we have some very peaceful creatures. Did you see them? You didn’t see the ashram cows? No? Please go, you must see them. They are really peaceful, especially at this time of the day they are munching what they ate through the day and very peaceful, more peaceful than lot of saints. Just a full stomach – so much peace. Just grass! See this is all you have to do, because not much of a mind. Even to create turmoil you need a mind, with certain capability?
This mind has become a problem only because of so many silly assumptions we have made about life
So this mind has become a problem only because of so many silly assumptions we have made about life. So many kinds of camouflages we have put on life, not seeing it just the way it is. All kinds of inventions about it, too many philosophies, too many ideologies – oh, I am going too far. Lot of people are just living by some silly slogan that they read somewhere.
This happened in an African village. There was a man eating lion, bothering a certain village – grabbing men, women and children off and on and making breakfast of them, or dinner. So they did not know how to deal with this lion because it was a very ferocious animal. So they called the big time celebrated hunter from Zimbabwe. His name was Kola Mandell Smite. Kola Mandell Smite is a big man, carried a big gun and is a big game hunter – big on all things. So they invited him for a big fee. He came, he walked around the village for three days, the lion didn’t turn up. He had other contracts, so he said, ‘My time, precious time is going away. So let me do one thing. Bring one of your cows here.’ They brought a cow. With one slash of his hunting knife, big hunting knife, slashed the animal’s throat and then skinned the animal, took the hide, fresh hide and put it over his body as camouflage, hid his gun in this hide and went and started pretending like he is grazing upon the field.
So the villages were really impressed with this, and they were all waiting that he’ll get the lion today. Then they heard blood curling screams from Kola Mandell Smite, and all of them ran to see what happened. And they found a strange situation, that the bull was upon him. He started screaming, ‘You idiots! Why did you let the bull loose?’
One who does not embrace death, will not know life at all
So you don’t know which way it’ll get you. Death is like this – you don’t know which way it’ll get you, unless you have become aware that what you call as life, and what you call as death, are not two separate things. One who does not embrace death, will not know life at all. If you sit here, ‘I don’t want to die, I don’t want to die, I don’t want to die’ – all that’ll happen is, you will not live. You will anyway die, but you will not live for sure. It’s not that I want to die today, but if I do it’s alright with me. I’ll do everything to protect myself, to nurture myself, to take care of myself, but if I have to die today it’s okay with me. Now I can step out and live, otherwise I cannot live.
Basava, a Kannada Saint, a great poet, a fabulous devotee, a very beautiful devotee, a sage and a mystic wrote hundreds of poems – which constantly he treaded many, many things he wrote about death, lot of things about life, but many things about death.
This is a translation, it loses its some of the beauty of poetry but you get the meaning. Basava said:
Sacrificial lamb brought to the festival
Eats up the green leaf brought for decorations
Sacrificial lamb brought for the festival
Eats up the green leaf brought for the decoration
Not knowing a thing about the kill
Not knowing a thing about the kill
It wants only to fill its belly, born that day to die that day
But tell me, did the killer survive,
O kudallasangama deva
It is just that for the ignorant death comes, for those who are aware death doesn’t come, death is. As life is, death is.