If I ask people in general, “what are your thoughts about death? What do you think it would feel after being dead? Would you like to be dead?”, I am sure most of them would frown, and turn down the question as strange or silly one. There could be many reasons, some of them I can think of are…
1. People don’t like to think about death
2. People assume they are not going to die anytime soon
3. People don’t think there is something after death
4. People mistake death with pain, and they don’t even want to give it a thought
This is one thing that absolutely astonishes me about the way people think about death (or not think). They know it is unavoidable, they know they are going to die some day, but they always think that it is far away. Most of them are pretty confident about it. If I ask you, “what is the probability that you will die tomorrow?”, what would be your answer? Just think of it for few seconds, note down your answer on a paper or your mind, and resume reading.
Now I will tell you some interesting things about the way human mind works. Suppose I toss a coin in the air 6 times in a row, multiple times, and following are the results (H – Heads, T- Tails).
H H H H H H
H H H T T T
And now if I ask you, are above results random? Probably your answer would be No. Because in your mind, these results don’t fit into the category of random. If I had asked you the same question with the result set H T T H H T, then probably your answer would be Yes. Because this result appears more random than earlier two sets. The truth here is all the result sets are equally random. The human brain always tries to find coherence between random things. The sub-conscious decides the coherence, and tells the conscious mind what it is. Conscious mind is very lazy in nature and unless and until required, it accepts everything that sub-conscious tells it. According to mathematical theory of small numbers, a small group of numbers always yields extreme results than larger group. Human sub-conscious does not have capacity to think of this statistics. And that’s the reason you deceived yourself thinking that earlier set of results was not random (or less random than later).
Now, let’s come to the main question. Talking about death, I am listing out few scenarios in my life, that will be responsible for my death.
1. I slip and fall on head in my flat, bleed profusely, nobody finds out for few days, because I live alone. Not only in my flat, but on my entire floor.
2. Medical condition. Sudden death. Nobody finds out and I lie in my bed for few days.
3. While going to office, I meet with an accident. A truck overruns my cab.
5. Office building collapses out of nowhere.
6. A space body hits the earth
7. Lion enters the city from Jungle, right in front of me. I try to run, but Lion eats me.
8. Somebody shoots me by mistake while aiming someone else
And so on….
Now if you closely look at the list, except reason no. 6, people die every day due to one of the above reasons. And there can be many more possible reasons for death than just the above eight. If I escape from above reasons tomorrow, then I will be alive tomorrow at the same time.
Now if I ask you, that “what is the probability that you will die tomorrow?”, what would be your answer? Is the answer matching with your earlier answer? Probably not. Now you think that probability is more (This is called anchor effect in human psychology).
Now you are probably more inclined to agree with me, that death is not far away. But still you are not completely convinced, because your mind thinks of your life as very coherent one, and not random. But most of the events in this world are random than your think they are. The universe is random, it was and it will be. If you accept this, you will be able to think about death as a certain random event in your life.
In my opinion, people mistake death with pain. Pain is not death. Although you are more inclined to associate it with pain. Death is beyond the pain. I have wondered many times, and here is my answer. “Death is peace. Death is beautiful. It is a breather between two lives. Or if you live your life beautifully, it might be an escape route to divinity. Death can’t be explained. You have to die to feel it”.