Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Scotch-brite mouse decor display - “Never play cat and mouse games if you're a mouse.”

One man quipped: "It's not that I'm afraid of dying. It's just that I've been alive for as long as I can remember, and I'm kind of set in my ways."

Some people ARE afraid of dying. Others are not concerned about their death ... but they worry about how they're going to get there. Will illness linger? Or will it be sudden?

I can't even guess how or when I might die, but knowing this present existence will end has actually helped me to live passionately. Others have discovered the same phenomenon.

Journalists Bill and Judith Moyers did a documentary on death and dying in the U.S. They learned that many of the terminal patients they interviewed were peaceful about their impending deaths. In fact, many of them found greater meaning and beauty in life after learning that they would die!

According to Moyers, one man lived four years past his doctor's prognosis. In that time, he learned to cherish every moment of life. As he said, "If you are told you will never see spring again, and you live to see spring, spring takes on a whole new life." ("Modern Maturity," Sept./Oct. 2000)

Psychologist Abraham Maslow had a similar experience. After his first heart attack he realized that his remaining days on earth were short. He wrote about it to a friend: "My river never seemed so beautiful (Maslow lived in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on the Charles River). The confrontation with death -- and reprieve from it -- makes everything look so precious, so sacred, so beautiful and I feel more strongly than ever the impulse to love it, to embrace it, and to let myself be overwhelmed by it...." Can you imagine feeling that way about death? He ends with this remarkable statement: "Death, and its ever present possibility makes love, passionate love, more possible. I wonder if we could love passionately, if ecstasy would be possible at all, if we knew we'd never die."

But we DO know we'll die! And, strange as it may seem, knowing life is short can help us to live ... beautifully, meaningfully, passionately.

A book's ending helps us to decide how we liked the book. A movie that seems to go on endlessly loses enjoyment for most viewers . A never-ending meal may cause diners to become disinterested in the food. Likewise, knowing life is all too short gives power to live it passionately and enjoy it fully.

I'll someday die. And so will you. Be glad! It is BECAUSE of that knowledge that we can live every day -- every moment -- with passion!

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes


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