When we understand that birth and death are part of a continuum, we can stop treating death as taboo and a cause for anxiety and grief. Then we have the opportunity to die consciously, peacefully and even joyfully.
The understanding that death is natural and a part of life is, happily, eroding the taboo that has enshrouded it till now. The medical profession may largely still treat dying as a disease and regard death an affront to its expertise. Yet collectively we are becoming more accepting of the fact of our mortality.
And yes, even when we accept that life as we have known it is terminal, there may still be questions, doubts and anxieties. Fear of death is generally the primary concern
OSHO Sammasati’s suggestion is: Why not accept any doubts and fears and see what they’re about now, while you are still healthy in body and mind? In fact the majority of Issues which may arise for a dying person turn out to be those very same issues that have plagued them throughout their life – though now appearing with greater intensity.
Arriving at a point of acceptance means we can then enter dying consciously, cooperating with whatever is happening gracefully, even joyfully and with gratitude.
Meditation is a kind of metaphysical dying. Through our becoming familiar with that inner passage, we can relax when it extends into our physical dying. [See Meditation as a window into dying].
In addition, the various forms of meditation techniques – many of which are featured on our site – support us with individual issues such as facing fear, aloneness, pain and losing our personal autonomy.
Not only can meditation open a window on dying, dying can open a door to meditation. As our interest in the outer world diminishes, it’s natural for us to turn our energies inwards. Without any of the activities or roles that we believed defined us, it’s also natural that we seek to find a more essential sense of self. When we know that time is limited, each moment becomes precious. Living in the present is not so much an option as our reality.
Our workshops and other resources offered here give you the chance to discover a conscious, uplifting and fulfilling way to live and to die. A chance to claim the master key – that is, knowing yourself as both a participant in all your experiences and the observer that is free of all that happens.
OSHO Sammasati advocates
* Living fully and consciously
* Preparing for a dying that is a celebration rather than a calamity – a Conscious Death
* Meditation as a natural, easy path to living and dying with awareness and joy.
Before we go much further, it may be useful to ask: What exactly do we mean by ‘death’? What is it that is going to die? Read more
How can we prepare for dying?
Some people say that ‘living is the best preparation for dying‘and so see no need to give any more attention to the finiteness of their lives. Others declare ‘I’m too busy living to give energy to the subject of death.’
What they may be missing is the significance of how they are living. And also that ‘busy living’ does not – cannot! – exclude the reality of death. How many of us know of someone we love who has died while we continue living, or is dying right now, even as they live? In other words: ‘The subject of death’ is the subject of life!
Becoming familiar with death through meditative practices and exercises such as those we share in our workshops has the paradoxical benefit of bringing a greater appreciation of life.
Should we tell a dying family member, friend or patient that they are dying?
If we do not tell someone that they are dying, if we avoid the subject in the name of ‘sparing’ the patient, we live out a deception. It is said that a dying person knows that they are dying; and it can be that it is they who decide to say nothing in order to protect the other. Read more
Exploring the Nature of Death
Visiting or caring for a family member or friend as they were dying can be a life-changing experience, and one that prompts you to explore the nature of death. You may like to consider some resources featured on this website that include a selection of workshops, meditative techniques, articles and books.
Meditations for Dying
In this section you can find a number of meditations that can be used when you are healthy as a way of befriending death; when you are facing imminent death and even in the actual process of dying. view meditations
Articles on Death & Dying
In this section you can find a number of articles written by Maneesha and others that view death through a variety of lenses. read articles
Books on Death & Dying
There are many books on the subject of death and dying. Here is a selection together with reviews or comments by Maneesha. view books
Osho Sammasati Death-related Workshops
Our various workshops are specifically designed to help you understand – not just intellectually but experientially – what dying can mean to you and to others, and how you can prepare for it and support others to do so. view workshops
See also Facing One’s Own Imminent Death