02.23: Can’t set things right? See things right

by March 17, 2012

Whenever things go wrong in life, we can generally do something to set them right. But when death strikes, there’s nothing that we can do to set it right; the finality of death is unappealable. All that we try, cry, lie and die for is taken away from us in one merciless moment.

By taking away the option to set things right, death forces a blessing on us; it compels us to see things right. Gita wisdom enables us to complete the shift of vision that death forcefully begins.

The Bhagavad-gita (2.23) indicates that our core identity has a sanctity that even death can’t violate; we are souls who can’t be destroyed even by the most fearsome weapons. We are destined for immortality by our intrinsic nature, but are sentenced to mortality by our inconsiderate choice. Our material bodies are unavoidably time-bound; when we choose to let our sense of self-identity be tied down to our bodies, we suffer the horror of death. But when we recognize our true identity to be beyond our mortal body and realize that identity by regular spiritual practice, then we see death not as an unwelcome termination of our being, but as a welcome transition to a higher realm of being.

Thus, death is ultimately intended to compel us to reclaim our right to immortality, thereby offering us a blessing far greater than a prolonged and prosperous life. However, if we postpone accepting that blessing till death comes upon us, it may well be too late. Far safer, easier and better is it to accept that blessing now by seeing death take its toll around us; that blessing of a holistic sense of self-identity will help us not just at death, but also in life.


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