Stories & Reflections
As you probably know, we are all going to die one day.
As we become aware of that, we should surrender to life with much more joy, making things we always postpone, respecting the precious minutes that are passing by and will never come back, disclosing and discovering horizons that can be interesting or disappointing, but deserve at least a little bit of our effort.
It’s normal that we try to avoid death.
It isn’t only normal, it’s the healthiest attitude we can adopt. It is an aberration however to deny it, as the awareness of it lends us much more courage.
If I were to die today, what would I like to do that I haven’t done yet? This is my thought every morning. I learned, along the Saint James Path, that the Angel of Death is my best counsellor.
Yamamoto Tsunetomo says to his disciple: ‘All of us want to live and that is absolutely natural. However, we should learn from childhood on to choose our best way to die.
‘If we don’t do that, we end up spending our days like a dog, only in search of harbour, food and expressing a blind loyalty to his owner in return. That isn’t enough to make our lives have a meaning.’
It is no use in trying to create a world apparently safe and I can find nothing better to explain that than a little story by John O’Hara:
A man goes to the market to buy fruits, when he sees his own Death walking among the people.
Desperate, he runs back and asks his employer to exempt him that day, as he had seen his Death from close.
His boss lets him go to his village, but starts thinking that all that might have been a lie. He goes to the market and really sees his employee’s Death, sitting in a bank.
He complains: ‘But what are you doing here? My servant was surprised to see you and because of that I had to dismiss him from work!”
‘I was surprised to see him here as well,’ Death answers.
‘I have a date with him at five o’clock, at his village, and as it seems, he will escape me!’