Death is a function of life. How it is perceived
becomes cultural. Or in another way, how it is perceived is up to
you or I, and the things we think we know.
I have always enjoyed interpretations of death
that regard it as primarily an issue for those who survive. The idea
that there is a place to go that is happier, or perfect, impinges upon
grief, because it provides for reunion. Which makes the circle and
has to it a pattern that minds can grasp. But what happens to the
survivor who has no great desire for reunion?
It is a question that suggests enmity.
Suggests there is no grief on the part of a survivor. Suggests that
amongst the wailing there is one mourner concealing an envy.
Something which is clearly improper.
My own perfect 'end time' arrangements would be as
follows. I will successfully avoid the medical profession long enough
to dig my own grave. Observing recent practice and tradition the grave
will be six foot into the ground. I will then retire to my bed, and as
I die I hope to hear wailing in the Daoist tradition before being carried to
the final resting place.
Then when the shovels are put away, I would like
people to eat meat, drink beer and listen to "I wanna be sedated" by the
Ramones played so loud that conversation is impossible for a period that
should not exceed two hours. It would be nice, during this two hour
period, to have an effigy of me dismembered as a tribute to the Zoroastrians,
and this in lieu of the now illegal practice of placing the 'remains' in a
tree so that birds of the air might feast upon them.
Demanding of me perhaps, but afterwards people can go about
their business as they often do knowing that I am perfectly happy.