life after death

28 elemental rule 5

Austin Kleon admits to reading obituaries each morning: ‘Obituaries aren’t really about death; they’re about life.’

He’s making sure he does something half-decent with his life, like the people he’s reading about

Many people who’ve had near-death experiences tell of how different life looks like afterwards, how they’re going to make the most of it – the old obstacles won’t get in the way, what people think no longer matters.

I was reminded of when I went to swim at a pool – a euphemism for something extremely inelegant on my part – and, not being a very good swimmer, panicked when I couldn’t touch the bottom of the pool. I began floundering but no one noticed; I didn’t want this to be “it” and somehow struggled my way to the edge and pulled myself out of the pool – still no-one had noticed (I like to think someone eventually would have noticed).

For some time afterwards everything seemed sweeter.

Life after death.

In ancient rites of passage, one of the elementary truths a youngster faced would be: You are going to die.  The thinking was, they would face death upfront and then live life fully  as a contributing member of their society.

We get to live one life; the trick is not to waste it.  Whether we read obituaries as a way of having near-death experiences or we write one for our own life,* or we get really focused from the first moment of the day around what it is we must do to make a difference, what if we train ourselves to be life-after-death people who make it possible for others to live again?

Here are three questions which make me wonder more:

Who is my song for?
What is my question?
Where is my itch?

When you make a dream come true for yourself,
it’ll be a dream come true for someone else too.

(*You might want to try a ten-minute writing exercise, when you time yourself to create your own obituary, imagining the things you;d most want to be said about you, or, go to the future and write a letter to yourself in the present, about how your life has changed and what you are doing.)

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