This week I lost someone who meant a lot to me. She had been dealing with cancer for several years and did quite well to survive and thrive despite the hardships. It was a terminal prognosis however, and recently we learned her remaining time would likely be measured in months. Yet even with the anticipation of death, it was a shock to get that phone call saying her life on earth had come to a close. And it has always been a shock to me, every time I’ve lost someone I loved, no matter how much their body had declined and the end was clearly in sight.
I remember how a philosophy teacher I had in graduate school explained to the class that human history is full of civilizations who conducted deliberate burial rituals. People would bless the dying and prepare the deceased for eternal life, much like we still do today in one way or another. What this suggests is that there is something deep within us that knows physical death on earth is not the end but a passageway to something else. We have instinctively known throughout the ages that somehow our story goes on.
This is why I think our experience of death can be so shocking. Death appears final to the mind, which witnesses a direct change of the physical. Meanwhile the soul intuitively feels a perpetual nature residing in all of us and thus rejects any perception of finality. It can be confusing as we adjust to the material absence of one we love, but eventually Spirit confirms to us again and again — in a moment from nature, in a dream with a message, in a feeling of unseen companionship, etc. — that there is something beyond this experience. Indeed, our story goes on.
May you be inspired!