There’s this, alarming awareness that we all feel at one point in our lives. Where our actuality, our viability, existence is very much on the precipice of departure. Many refer to these occurrences as “near death” experiences but aren’t they really “near life” experiences?
Don’t they make us aware of our animation in the greater macrocosm?
We approach death every second of every day. It’s an inevitability and as a culture, we’re paranoid, obsessed and completely and totally phobic and neurotic about dying. It’s going to happen to you, to all of us and we as a species or at the very least, a massive collective of livestock seem to focus half on one end of the spectrum and the other half on the opposite end
One long, chaotic game of tug-of-war and the verity is that no one is focusing on where the flag in the middle of the rope is. Death is not stronger than life. Life is not stronger than death. They are equally powerful but, neither force commands or even demands our obsessive compulsion.
A car accident, turbulence, a mugging; all of these things force us to pull harder toward life and sure, the flag may move but ask yourselves just how far it will?
While standing in my bathroom shaving I felt an overwhelming pull, bright light, a loss of all senses. I wasn’t going blackout or lose consciousness. It was a schism and I consciously knew that. I won’t bring in religion to this conversation with myself because it’s purely an existential, metaphysical one.
The alleged light we see at the end of the tunnel, in my belief, is not at the end of the tunnel. It’s us…leaving the body, this realm.
We are the light.
Where that light is going, I don’t know but I wasn’t ready to find out just yet and I focused deeply to bottle it up again but the point is, I could have. I could have just let my inner marrow give up the ghost and dissipate but I’m not interested in the game of life vs. death right now.
I’ve been close to death in a medical sense more times than I can recollect. A drug overdose, that my shit-sucking friends cared so much about that they left me next to a KFC dumpster in Arcata, CA. I’ve slit my wrists twice. I was stabbed in the neck in Biloxi, MS and I damn near jumped from a 4th story window of a building under construction in Bismarck, ND but I wasn’t seeking death. I wanted out of this body, out of this skin.
That was in 1998. Things have not changed…much. I still loathe being in this iron maiden of a body. Sure, I could change a lot…physically. But, that won’t change this body’s malformation, nor will it change the ugliness it masks inside.
What changed was this: I realized that it didn’t fucking matter which side the flag on the rope ended up on because there is no clear winner. Life and death are not a game and eventually, I realized the flag was the point, the answer.
It was right in the middle…where we all should be focused. Perfectly aware of death on one end and what really amounts to eternal life on the other. If the flag ends up on death’s side, you’re dead, gone, done. If it ends up on life’s side, well that side is a lie. Because that flag will always find it’s way over to death’s side. It’s just that death is patient, if not opportunistic.
Doesn’t mean you should be reckless, careless or stupid about living. It means relax, stop obsessing over death or the perfect life or even if you’re living life like you should be. Just be a good person, do the right thing and live by that code.
One day a proverbial gust of wind will blow your flag over to death but in the meantime…just exist in the middle. Be centered.
Wait it out…