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  • Writer's pictureAnnelisa MacBean

Death Will Not Kill You

A person who is committed to living an inner life, who is devoted to attending to the life of the soul . . . this person knows that death is truly a transition zone, a rest stop. To that person, death is not extinction. It is a meaningful departure, a transition. This is the teaching of the Bhagavad Gita, Chapter Two.

As consciousness evolves and is eventually transformed, death ultimately becomes unnecessary. When the body, vital, mind, heart and soul aspire together, the divine Power of Life, which we call Light, Bliss or Peace can live in an undying human form.

If you are like me, you are aspiring for these divine qualities. We are aspiring together to live the magnificent, immense and simple truth of our potential as human beings.

“Even as man discards old clothes for the new ones, so the dweller in the body, the soul, leaving aside the worn-out bodies, enters into new bodies. The soul migrates from body to body. Weapons cannot cleave it, nor fire consume it, nor water drench it, nor wind dry it.” BG 2:22

The Bhagavad Gita explains that our bodies have death, but the soul does not. The body sleeps, the soul flies. Sri Aurobindo says “Death has no separate existence by itself, it is only a result of the principle of decay in the body and that principle is part of the physical nature. At the same time, even physical decay is not inevitable; if one could have the necessary consciousness and force, even decay and death is not inevitable.”

What we westerners know as death is a reflection of our limited consciousness and limited understanding of Life. We are simply ignorant, unlearned, unaware.

The good news is that we can come to terms with death when we learn about Life. The knowledge that Life is eternal, that it existed before birth and it will exist after death can shift how we perceive every aspect of our human experience. Awakening to the awareness that Life not only exists between birth and death; but is also beyond birth and death, and is infinite and immortal, can relieve us seekers of the anxiety that comes with knowledge of physical mortality.

The ancient texts and teachers guide us to be focused and unwavering in our commitment to live faithfully, in reverence and respect for the Infinite, immortal Life that lives in and through the human form. The generous and loving invitation is to be true to one’s self, to listen to and respond to and take action on the Life-force moving through our own unique and individual bodies, regardless of what others may say or how we may be received.

So often I have believed that expressing or acting on what is living in me will ensure rejection or humiliation, which can feel like death or annihilation. My ego really does die or wishes it could! I have experienced the death of ideas and self-image. But the reality has been I don't actually expire. My experience has been that there is something constant that is also me, beyond my ego, that does not die. There is a dimension of "I am" that is persistent and unchanging. Life, which is manifest as "me" or through me, does not die. So far, death has not killed me; and it won't kill you.

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