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Are you Afraid of Death?

by on January 13, 2011
in Musings, Self, Spirituality

Consider this. There are 24 hours in one day, 365 days in one year, and about 80 years, give or take, in one’s lifespan; assuming you don’t find yourself in a terrible accident or with some fatal illness. If you do the math, that’s about 2,522,880,000 seconds in an average life.

Now, plug your age into this equation:2,522,880,00 – (age x 31,536,000) = The amount of time/life you have left.

The numbers here are arbitrary. The point is that you have a limited amount of time until you die.

What are you doing with that time? This is your life, the time you spend in consciousness having the experience of perceiving reality. What are you devoting it to? Who are you giving it to? What are you willing to die for? A higher cause? A God? Your family? Your work? Freedom?

Our society wants us to believe that committing suicide, for example, is an eternal sin. It must be prevented at all costs. The truth is that it is simply a choice, an individual value judgement made in time that illustrates death’s higher value compared to life.

Who gets to make that choice? Certainly a five year-old child is incapable. Focusing on this question takes us beyond the scope of this post. For argument’s sake, we will assume for all considerations that any persons in question are full-grown, law abiding, physically and mentally healthy adults.


In this case, the individual has the right and capability to take his own life if he so chooses.  All we have are our choices.  Now, if we have this much control over our will to live or die, why do we choose not to control our lives, influences, habits, and emotions in way that is consistent with the life we wish to lead?

Because it’s hard.

Nothing worth doing or having is easy to obtain, because chances are there is steep competition. When you make a decision to go after something big or lofty, you need an emotional foundation rooted in a faith and a determination that is so strong, you are willing to die trying. This is the key to accomplishing anything worthy of greatness.

You don’t have to look far into human history to find numerous examples.

You can be certain of a few things:
1) It will be difficult.
2) Lots of people with try stop you
3) Despair will try to befriend you
4) You will succeed (or die trying)*

You Decide

The last point is up to you. You have to decide whether or not that goal or objective is worth giving up life. You have to understand what you get at the end of the tunnel or after climbing the mountain. And you decide whether to quit and go on to something else. Find and identify the object, activity, experience, or person(s) that is worth more to you than your life. Fight to keep and protect it. You will soon find that nothing else matters and your self-defined purpose will become more clear.  You have a reason to live.

How do you define life? Is it time? Is it flesh and blood? Is it an activity? How much is that goal worth to you? What are you willing to go through to get it?

I leave you with Martin Luther King, Jr. - A man who won’t die for something is not fit to live.

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2 Responses to “Are you Afraid of Death?”
  1. Csbjork says:

    In the comfort of my American lifestyle, it is easy to forget about this question of “what things are worth dying for?” Thank you for raising it, Koby. It’s surprising that I do not consider this question more in my personal life because as a part-time actor, the stakes for many characters in a given scene are often life-or-death. Certainly such heightened stakes create compelling narratives, but it raises the question of why do I so rarely face such life-or-death situations my own life. Is it because my environment is less oppressive than that of the characters I play? Or do I already obtain that which I value as much as my life? And if so, do I take that item for granted? Or do I simply neglect to consider the question of what things are as valuable as life to me all together?

    • kobyackie says:

      It’s easy to forget the amount of power and control we have over our own lives. The reason I think these questions are important is because they remind us of the things that we appreciate. They are tough questions to ask, and not every is exactly excited about asking them.

      You raise a good point about our environment. I do think that in western society there is a fair amount of distance between facing these hard questions dead on and just living life happy-go lucky, not to suggest that happy-go lucky is bad.

      What’s more difficult is determining when it is appropriate to ask such questions, and then following through (with action) on the answer.

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