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April 19, 2022

Why Death is often Misunderstood (& How to Embrace the Cycle of Life).

 

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Easter and early spring always make me think about transformation—as rebirth and resurrection are certainly the ultimate experiences of transformation.

In order to experience resurrection, we must first experience death. There is truly no way around this.

And death can come in many forms—it can be physical, or it can be the death of the ego, or the end of life as we know it. Death is vital if we ever want to change or make real progress in life. People who refuse to experience death are those who get stuck—in addictions, in unsafe relationships, in dysfunctional patterns.

Death is often misunderstood as scary, negative, and as a deeply unsavory experience. We might want to skip the death part and go straight to eternal life.

But without death, this process simply cannot happen.

I understand why people fear death. It’s painful. It’s unnerving. It’s a deep and profound change that people never feel ready for. I understand why many want to push death from their thoughts and to forget about it altogether.

But this is a grave mistake.

I have had the opportunity to experience the deep transformation that is death on multiple occasions. Times where I lost everything externally and internally. Times where I experienced huge setbacks and was forced to sit with—just sit with—a profound sense of loss of everything I worked for and everything I once was.

I have witnessed death of the physical form of those I love and when working with dementia patients who are slowly letting go of this world and moving into the next. Death was on my syllabus for this lifetime, and I have been an avid student.

And because of these experiences, I have learned to honor and not fear death. Because ultimately, the more we accept death, the closer we get to eternal life, to a knowledge that it is all life, that there is beauty in all of it, and that death is not the horrible and terrifying experience we have been led to believe it is.

There is such grace in loving each stage of the cycle.

If Christ had not been crucified, He would not have been resurrected. I think this point deserves some contemplation, some awareness—that to understand what is eternal, we must embrace what is not.

I have found that in embracing death, I have become much more resilient. I don’t let challenges or pain derail my life. I feel things deeply, and I let them go and let them transform me.

It is surprising to me how things that I know would have taken me years to get over in the past now take mere weeks. And I feel it has been me fully embracing challenges, setbacks, and deaths that has allowed me to do this.

Know that wherever you are on your resurrection journey, if you’re rebuilding or letting go or moving forward, it is all okay.

It is beautiful, and safe, and deeply sacred.

Happy Easter.

~

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