‘Death’ is the greatest enigma in life. It has baffled humankind from times out of mind.
And yet despite all attempts to solve the mystery, it has remained as mysterious as ever before.
Death is not what it seems to be
The Saints of the highest order – Sant Satgurus, or the perfect Masters – who come down from the region of deathlessness and are ever in tune with the Infinite, know the shadowy character of death. They teach us that death is not what it seems. It is a joyous birth (born again) into a life more beatific than we ever dreamed of here. It is just as sun sets on this side of the globe and rises in the other part. They point out and demonstrate to us the way to conquer the seemingly invincible and terrifying death and thus become fear-free. This is the grand lesson that we can get from the Saints. They assure us that we do not die – we simply shake off the physical vesture of the body to work in other bodies: physical or astral or causal; and ultimately rise to realize our divine nature and see oneness in God – the all-consciousness and bliss.
Sant Kirpal Singh
Die before you really have to die
To die before death means to rise (in meditation) above body-consciousness while alive. In actual death the silvercord, (which connects the soul to the body) and which is based on the reactions of the past that is broken. If you rise while alive, the silvercord is not broken – you have to return. The question was put to Prophet Mohammed, “You and all the others have said the same thing: Learn to die while alive! What is meant by this?” Kabir said the same thing, Guru Nanak said the dame thing. To this question all Masters say, “This death will not take you to the grave or cremation place, it will only just let you pass from the physical world into the beyond.” And then our angle of view will be changed and death loses its sting.
If one dies while living, for him death is sweet.
His rank and honour are dead, so too is dead his I-ness;
His pride is dead, with it all his deceptive desires.
If one dies while living, for him death is sweet.
Those who, while living die by merging into the Lord
Become immortal, o Kabir
Questions and answers concerning death
Is the life span of an individual determined at birth?
Sant Kirpal Singh: Yes
How is it possible to give help to dying people who are in their last agonies? Is it allowed to give them assistance from our side so that they can die more easily?
Dr. Harbhajan Singh: The greatest aid is to give them the theoretical aspect of life to make them understand the purpose of human life. But do not give them personal attention. With your personal attention it will not benefit them, maybe a little, but it will affect you in the worst way. So only tell them the right way of life as far as they can understand. To give them the right aspect of life, the purpose of human life, is the biggest blessing you can give to someone.
I told you about some instances, where people, who had been told something about the Master, remembered Him, and Master appeared at their physical departure. I told these instances in open Satsang and Master said, “If someone remembers that Power – it doesn’t matter whether he is initiated or not – even if he remembers Him only a short time before his death that Power has to come there.”
But the question is if people who are going to die are able to think of Him, if the soul can remember Him. When some instructions are given and you put someone’s attention into the right direction, he can remember this Power.
Many times I have heard about the importance of our last thought at the time of our dying?
Sant Kirpal Singh: You see, if you have been accustomed to one thought, a ruling passion in your life, then naturally that will be the last thought with you. Anything which has been ruling your mind will come up.
And you go to where you last thought was?
Sant Kirpal Singh: Yes, if – I am adding “if” now. If some conscious person is there to direct, that will help. These are exceptions, of course.
I know a man who can’t move, he can’t take food or take care, but his heart beats. Should he be let alone to die or go on living on this plane like that?
Sant Kirpal Singh: Man should do his best, do what he can, in the instance of keeping life longer. If he is not to live longer, he cannot live longer. “Thy days are numbered.” With all your help, he won’t live longer.
Is his soul still in the body as long as his heart is beating?
Sant Kirpal Singh: Yes, surely. The system cannot go on without it. When that is withdrawn, everything stands still.
Is there a particular karmic punishment because of suicide?
Yes, you see, our life is more valuable than our body; our body is more valuable than outward things. If we enter into a state of mind that we even hate our life, that we are going to kill ourselves – this is a very strong action and that reaction will come. The Theosophical Society says that a man who commits suicide will commit suicide for at last one hundred births afterwards. Each time that reaction will come again. Some people commit suicide for no (obvious) reason.
Because the urge of killing is there
Sant Kirpal Singh: Yes, yes it is a reaction. That’s a heinous crime, to kill oneself. How can you ever dream of killing your own life? It’s a very strong reaction. If the controlling Power, some higher Power or Godpower or Christpower, you might say, is there, that reaction might be softened down; that’s another thing.
This is a study which explains what death is and how its mystery can be solved.
Descriptions of what happens to the soul after death are given.
Death is our constant companion: ages upon ages death has not left us. Inspite of this inescapable fact we are not ready to accept this throughout our life. Most of the people say, “Okay, whatever will be, will be.” Since we came in this world, everyone has to meet this end. We got this body from the world, made from dust and it goes back to dust, but life in it is eternal. It has an unbreakable and constant link with the Godpower.