Let’s Define Death

An acquaintance of mine and I–we live in the same cul-de-sac– both have cancer. Since cancer can so often be a terminal disease, the thought of death naturally  became a topic of our discussion. Sadly, my friend has since “graduated,” as he liked to put it, but the memory of our many discussions, especially about death, still lingers strong within my mind.

First, what is life? O.k., there are many philosophical opinions and definitions of what constitutes life, any of which can be correct wrong, or ill-defined and worthy of further discussion. But, one that had the most meaning to me was where I likened both life and death to an iPad, or Smart Phone. We all have one, so this makes an easy comparison.

The Smart Phone is a very powerful and useful tool in our lives that can perform some remarkable things like let one talk to your neighbor or a business acquaintance on the other side of the world, solve math problems or let you write letters, listen to music, and so on. But, what happens when you pull the energy source, the battery and memory card from your Smart Phone?

That’s death! Your Smart Phone has died! It still has the appearances of being whole, it still  looks like it did before: you give it a shake, “come on. Wake up!”–but something is missing: it’s missing its energy and its missing its memory. The thing is dead, completely lifeless! Without its battery (energy) and memory card (awareness), no matter how much you prod, shake or try to resuscitate it, your attempts are futile. It’s dead! You can throw it away–or bury it, like we humans like to do with our bodies.

And, in similitude, this is exactly what happens to a human when he dies: his energy, his battery–his soul–his Self– inseparable from his memory, has been ‘pulled’ from his body. An ‘Upper Room’ decision has been made to ‘upgrade’ the Self to a new realm, leaving a dead, lifeless body behind for the undertaker to dispose of.

The next question, of course, is, who, and what, exactly, is the Self? That part of us,  that decided to ‘pull’  itSelf–the energy and memory card from our ‘Smart Phone,’ that we were having so much fun with, and where does it go?

In humility, we must admit that we’re more like a computer, albeit a very sophisticated computer, than we sometimes care to admit.

About Albert Schindler

I was born on the 27th of February, 1931, on a farm near Hubbard, Saskatchewan. As far back as I can remember I had a spirit that would not stay earthbound. In junior high, I remember taking first place for a short story in which I described my terrifying encounter with a dinosaur. In outer space – that is, when the teacher wasn’t directly speaking to me, I went where Buck Rogers wouldn’t dare go. I was more of a Calvin in Calvin and Hobbes type of guy, with my own, personal, very powerful, transmogrifyer always at the ready. In my ‘teens and twenties, I pushed aside my Calvin alter ego in favour of making a living and didn’t take seriously again my ‘writer’s bug’ until my late 30s. I still saw that the world as full of exciting things to learn and investigate, which my writing reflected in the several articles and a couple of short fiction pieces that I wrote and sold, including over 30 children’s radio plays for Alberta’s ACCESS Radio. Unfortunately, I abandoned my budding writing career in favour of starting my own business as a sign painter. Now that I can officially call myself ‘retired,’ I plan to resume my writing career, only this time, writing mostly fiction. Why fiction? I have lead a great, adventurous life in which I made many mistakes (the ‘adventure’ in life), that have taught me some very important lessons and allowed my spirit to grow to unimaginable proportions, inconceivable to me while still in my thirties. In fiction, I believe, one can adventure into both the inner and outer consciousness of man and the universe to infinite levels where only the boldest dare peak. Convention holds that article writing has to be factual – oh, you can be creative in how you present your information, but ‘fact’ (whatever that means) still must have its parameters in article writing, whereas fiction is limited only by the size of a writer’s spirit, and so far, I haven’t been able to fathom my limit.
This entry was posted in Mysticism, Philosophy, Points to Ponder, Psychology, Religion, Spiritualism, Thoughts and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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