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Why Do You Fear Death? (A message via spirit communication)
Spirit: The soul that just left her body on Earth is somewhat cloistered while reviewing her recent life. Everyone is. It is required to study the physical life just completed. At this time, souls have few visitors. It is like a resting vacation in a way, no great socializing, a more serious vacation intended for study, as if you are going away to a beautiful place like Hawaii, but instead of seeing all the tourist spots, you are going to stay in a particular house near the sea so that you can study something very important to you. There is much time for rest and reflection and introspection.
The Guides who specialize in this reorientation work are there with you, but there is also time alone when required. We who guide you while you are on Earth are not the ones guiding you through the reorienting, but we also do not have to leave you unless you or the Reorientation Guides request us to do so. When we are very good friends the way we all are, of course we stay if you want us to do so. However, in any introspective self-study, there will be times when you will want to sit alone in the meditation forest or on a rock staring at the sea and just think or cry or pray. Even then, if we are not restricted from doing so, and if you are sitting on a rock and you think, “Oh, I need my Guides to be here with me now,” instantly we will be there and take you into our arms and comfort you. All returning souls have to review, and that is a happy and a sad time, because even the happy moments might make you sad when you realize that those loved ones who are still living on Earth are grieving for you. Then sometimes you become sad because you wish you had done things differently. So most of the time, reviewing does have a share of sadness, but…
Learner: It’s a pain, in other words.
Spirit: But remember you are here being surrounded with more Love than you felt during your years on Earth. You are also remembering your abilities to communicate telepathically and to move about with thought. You are learning more about what is here, and the fullness of who you really are. All of this can be a little overwhelming at first. That is why you need to be in a quiet area with a restful attitude. Some do not do this at first. Some are too upset, too confused and unwilling to listen to the Guides, unable to even settle down enough to review for awhile. And some must go immediately into an area of isolation, so they may not review for a thousand Earth years until they are able to hold the vibration necessary for the planes of Light, until they can understand. When they are open to changing their attitude, to allowing the Light into their souls, then they are ready to review.
Spirit: When your physical body dies, the closer you are to the Light, the faster your acclimation to your Home will be. Death is joyous. It is a celebration. It is a rebirth, in fact, a rebirth to your Home. While you are there on Earth, it is as if you were on a trip far away, to somewhere distant and foreign to you right now. If one of you went to Tibet for 75 years and the other one stayed home, the one who left would feel at first strange and out of step, and like they were in a foreign land. But eventually, they would become at home in Tibet, and they would barely remember their home; if they were very young when they arrived in Tibet, they would not even remember their original home at all. Yet to the one who remains in that home, the traveler is always in a foreign land. They know it is not the traveler’s real home, and they miss the traveler and wait anxiously for the traveler to return home. The traveler has occasional stirrings within his soul, but he may not recognize them as being signs of how much he misses his real Home.
There is a Christmas song you know that says, “There’s no place like home for the holidays, no matter how far and wide you roam.” Well, it is the same with death. There is no place like Heaven, because it alone is your true Home. Why do you fear coming home to your one and only true Home? No one should fear death of the physical body if they walk in the Light.
There is more Love here in Heaven in a stranger’s handshake than in the hugs of many on Earth who claim friendship. When you die to your Earth life, you are being welcomed again in Love and Joy by all those you love who are here. Soon after, you will also be able to return briefly to Earth in order be with those who are still there. You’ll be able to visit them in their sleep and remain there with them a little while. While they sleep, you will be able to greet them in their dreams. So focus on Love, and fear not. We are always with you to bring you God’s love. When your physical body has finished its life, we are there beside you to bring you Home -sometimes for a huge surprise party, and sometimes for a celebration planned well in advance, one that you are expecting. But for those who love God, it is always a festive occasion to return Home.
Spirit: When you die, if you are very sick, you may be unconscious or semi-conscious on Earth, or your thinking may not be clear. In those cases, death is like waking up from a confusing dream and suddenly having a clear head and being able to think easily and quickly and suddenly feeling very well. Or you may be very tired still and need to rest in a hospital for awhile. Some people who are not aware of God or the tremendous love of God may be very confused at first about where they are and they, too, will go to hospital. But if it is someone who is aware of the reality of life after physical death, they will quickly know where they are and why, and who is there to meet them.
Spirit: Coming Home through the Light simply puts you in the position to receive help in reorienting to your true Home here. It does not dispel every Earthly concern or connection or emotion. You do that yourself as you receive the help of your Guides and seek to understand. If you do not seek understanding and growth, you are kind of hindered and stuck until you unburden yourself from that life. You can hang around and do virtually nothing for eons, and as long as you are not interfering with others, you won’t be interfered with, either – but you also won’t grow.
There are as many variations in death experiences as there are people.
The angels, with whom I deliberately partner for my practice, explain that we each have our personal, as well as our shared experience of dying. The commonalities are based on how we see ourselves in the world: our beliefs – religious and non-religious, what we anticipate will happen when we die, and the refusal or acceptance of our very personal death.
Just as some of us jump into everyday life experiences with aplomb, others, in dying, “hold on for dear life.” Interesting how our vernacular speaks to us.
Normal Death Experiences:
• Your personal old-age death experience, depends upon your resistance or lack of it. When you know intuitively that the best in your physical life is over, and that your continuation of life in spirit form is much easier, you can leave your body on the table, the bed, the floor, in a minute. It is your willingness that allows your spirit to release your body easily along with your pre-programmed check-out time.
• Unknowingly, many of us create life-threatening disease. Debilitating illness allows us to die in slow motion. Surrounded by our loved ones, and caretakers, often we allow ourselves to feel safe enough to accept the love we were unable to receive before, and to learn to love in return. A slow death can also be about the people who are with us, who have, again unknowingly, chosen to experience the lesson of loving, forgiving, and letting go.
• Some of us have the apparent misfortune to be in a painful body. Nothing keeps us more closely connected to earth than pain, which won’t allow us to think of much else. Pain reminds us incessantly that we are in physical form. In this state we cry to die, forgetting that before we lived in this body, we begged to be in alive on earth for the experience of sharing our quantum of knowledge to change the world. What is difficult to see when it’s your body wracked with pain, is that loving you teaches others compassion.
• There are those of us who are much involved with our friends and family on earth and don’t want to leave them behind. Either we ourselves, our mates or progeny are holding on tightly to us, or we to them, even if we are overdue in leaving our physical bodies.
• Those with scientific, logical minds might hold onto life longer than necessary because we don’t have a viable explanation of life without a body. The void can loom large.
• And what about the litmus “test” of goodness? Will we be accepted by our chosen religious leader? Will He turn us away? We tend to judge ourselves and others as we have been taught.
The dying process is a time to clear our emotional “slate” by sharing our love through forgiveness that was difficult to maintain in everyday life.
Some of us look at life on earth, as being less than life in spirit form. If only we knew the truth, we might change our viewpoint. The angels share that the all-encompassing love that we experience in our dead life, is what we come back to earth to manifest in our human life. Shh! Don’t tell. There are way too many spiritual people who think this is their last trip.
Dying is a process and although not every person experiences the same physical changes as they move toward death there are enough similarities that you can know when the end is getting closer. It is hard to witness these changes but being aware means you are better able to help and to offer love right to the end.
Months out the first change to come is that your loved one will begin to disconnect from life and turn inward socially. Their need for conversation may lessen and they will want less company. They begin to think and process their lives. This processing of their life is vital for them to find closure and peace. They are ending relationships, roles and having to come to terms with letting go of life and loves here on earth.
– Be available to listen or talk as they want.
There are physical changes in appetite, bowels and bladder, sleep and breathing. As the body begins to shut down appetite lessens, intestinal functions slow and more sleep is needed. The rhythm of breathing changes, pauses and momentarily stops. Their skin color can flush or be bluish. Body temperature can fluctuate and congestion or coughing may start.
– Check for pain and administer medications as needed. Try to keep them as comfortable as possible. Realize this shutting down of the body is normal although difficult to watch.
There are mental changes that happen as death approaches. Confusion may start as the changes in the body continue and effect the brain. They may not know where they are or even who you are. They may feel the need to go on a trip and try to get ready to leave. They may have a surge of energy and want to get up for an outing and be chatty.
– Be patient, be supportive, care for them as you would want to be.
Your loved one has experienced many emotional changes but as death approaches you may find them moving toward acceptance and peace. The changes in their emotions are part of them processing their life and letting go. It may have been a roller-coaster but the dips diminish and the ride becomes smoother as you near the end.
– Help them to find closure. They may need to forgive, to make amends, to tell their story. Be there for them to listen and support and help them come to peace.
Many people experience spiritual changes as they reevaluate what they have believed and what will happen after death. You may see them talking with someone you cannot see as the veil between this life and the next thins for them.
– Listen as they process and ask if they need someone to talk with or to pray with.
Over time all these changes intensify as the end comes nearer yet symptoms may come and go. They sleep more now and interact even less. Their physical changes become more pronounced and they may move into unconsciousness. Their breathing will become more irregular, blood pressure and pulse harder to find. Circulation lessens and extremities may become purple, blotchy and cold. You may see their eyes half open and glassy in the days before their death.
You may see your loved one become restless and unable to get comfortable. They might pull at the bedding and move around continuously. This “terminal restlessness” can be an indication that death will happen within days.
– Check pain medications and continue to care for them as best as you can.
At the end they can no longer be awakened. There might be a sudden convulsion or spasm. Breathing is very shallow and rapid with the mouth open and may stop only to start again after a long wait.
– It is thought that hearing is the last sense to go so speak to them from your heart even when they can no longer respond.
Death. Then heartbeat and breathing stop. Your loved one is no longer present and the journey is over.
It is okay to feel whatever you feel.
A very inconvenient truth we cannot escape, if we choose to live in the company of loved ones
Grief is the price we pay for love.
~Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.
If you could choose your death you would probably elect a quiet, peaceful trip to the light fantastic – a last-breath slip-away at 95 or 100. It’s a death with the blessing of concerned, grief-laden onlooking family.
Fundamentally, the best possible death assumes saving faith in Jesus Christ.
DEATH HAS TWO FORMS
There are many forms of death, even to the living sacrifice of those most living!
Such a spiritual death continually manifests life for others and life ultimately for the person executing themselves for others’ benefit (2 Corinthians 4:10-12).
The event of a living sacrifice – in the kin of Romans 12:1 – is a death to self, and this can be termed a preferable state of living for the godly.
The death expected of the common Christian – to die to themselves – is, however, not really the focus here.
DEATH OF A FINAL KIND
The abovementioned death, that comes at the end of a long life, and one not without its own adjustments for sacrifice, is the best possible variety. This is given the fact that no death glorifies us in our mortal flesh, but it does glorify us if we are saved and we go to meet God, and, of course, it glorifies God also.
Everything there glorifies God.
For the family, such a death carries with it the unfolding experience of grief for loss; the unrequited situation regaling the need for inevitable adjustment. Their only consolation: this loved one is with the Lord. But such a state of being, to be without them, cannot really be reconciled.
Imagine the deceased person entering Glory, having hoped for years that each day might be ‘the day’. Suddenly – awash of life; the spirit flown – the faithful servant enters the presence of the King of kings. And there are no queues, no brief glimpses; no disappointments.
And what is heaven like? Two words: Eternal bliss.
But words cannot hope to capture what is beyond reality, or at least surpassing a sense of reality that we’re used to.
All this for death! And to think we avoid it and do anything to postpone the inevitable. That, of course, is totally understandable. We do not want to leave our loved ones, and we do not want to hurt them by our loss.
It’s the ultimate Catch-22 – to stay or go to be with the Lord (Philippians 1:23-24).
The best kind of death is one late of years, slipping away peacefully as possible, to be with the Lord. This is the best possible death because life there starts – a life that will never end.
Life after death. There are a lot of theories out there but for the sake of this article, I am going to use the Bible and the Bible only as a source of information. So let’s get started.
Hebrews 9:27 says “and as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the Judgement.” So one appointment we will all keep is death and then a judgement.
What about a trip to heaven? Isn’t that what we hear at almost every funeral? “My saintly mother is up in heaven looking down on us”… “Uncle Buck is out of pain and in a better place.” The guy who murdered 20 people in a movie theater is now forgiven and enjoying the carefree life of heaven.
According to the Bible there will not be immediate ascension to heaven. As a matter of fact even Jesus did not ascend directly to heaven. “15 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, why do you weep? whom seek you She, supposing him to be the gardener, saith unto him, Sir, if thou have borne him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away. 16 Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabbi; which is to say, Master. 17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.” John 20:15-17
So Jesus did not ascend directly to heaven and neither will man… “17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words. ” 1 Thessalonians 4:17-18
So if we are not ascending to heaven, the what happens after we die? Let’s look at a bible account in the book of Luke. In Luke chapter 16 we get the story of the rich man and Lazarus. The rich man and Lazarus die. Lazarus is comforted and the rich man is in torment. Their spirit is alive and aware of their surroundings. The rich man makes a request for water and is informed that there is a great gulf that separates the two places we are told about. The rich man also makes a request for Abraham to go to evangelize his five brothers. Abraham informs the rich man that there will be no such trip made. There is enough on earth now for the rich man’s brothers to make their decision.
So what about “The Judgement”? It would appear from the scriptures in Luke, that there is a judgement is made the instant we die. “10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad.” 2 Corinthians 5:10
But is there another Judgement? “10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. 11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. 13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. 14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” Revelation 20:10-15
So it would appear that the Bible teaches that there is death. A judgement. A waiting time until Jesus returns, then ascension to heaven for those who are in Christ and judged worthy. According to the Bible the judgement will be based on “their works” both good and bad. In Matthew 7:21 Jesus said that many, in the day of judgment will address Him as Lord, but He will reject them, because they did not do the will of His Father in heaven. In Luke 6:46 Jesus ask the question, of “why call me Lord and do not the things that I say?”
The will of God is found in the bible… “16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:” 2 Timothy 3:16 It would be difficult to know what the will is without reading it or hearing it.
There is a great scene in the Star Wars movie… “Return of the Jedi”. Lord Vader’s ship arrives on the yet uncompleted Death Star. Darth Vader informs the commander that he is there to put them back on schedule. The commander informs Vader that they are working as hard as they can and he needs more men to conform to the Emperor’s request. Vader then informs the commander that he can tell the Emperor himself. The commander upon hearing that he will be meeting the Emperor face to face responds “We shall double our efforts!”. How many of us would “DOUBLE OUR EFFORTS” if we knew we would meet God… today, face to face.
We all sin and fall short of the glory of God… Romans 3:23, but God still wants us to repent and do the best that we can. Revelation 2:10.
“10 Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:” 2 Peter 1:10
Learn the word of God. Do the word of God. And make your election sure.
Maybe this is all just a long way of saying that when my friend texted me with his momentous question—death doula or hospice volunteer?—I wasn’t ready with a snappy reply. If anything, it got me thinking about how working as a hospice volunteer is kind of like the new AA. It draws in people who are seeking to find themselves or, as my friend put it, “attempting self-love.” I don’t mean this as a knock on my friend. After all, there aren’t enough hospice volunteers to go around and he’s a good person. But the transactional ethos that infects all forms of volunteering starts to sound a bit facetious when you apply it to death-watching: It won’t be fun but it will get you into spiritual shape.
Need someone to “be present” for your final hours? Need music, aromatherapy, reiki? A death doula will, for a fee, swoop into your home and help.
As for the death doulas, the promise of self-actualization they extend to others tends to rebound on them in an even trickier way—one that hints at how circular and Sisyphean our market-approved quests for self-improvement really are.
The International End of Life Doula Association (INELDA) will host twelve trainings this year for hopeful trainees. “BE A PART OF THE MOVEMENT,” the ad copy urges. Over two and a half days in a Hilton or Embassy Suites conference room, attendees will take the first steps toward becoming Certified End-of-Life Doulas (CD) or Certified Advanced Doulas (CAD). Don’t forget your check for $600, plus $100 for the annual membership fee.
“The Lonely Death of George Bell” is just one example of how colossally we can miss the point when we try to sensationalize or pathologize a trend—living and dying alone—that is as deeply rooted in our social institutions as it is in any personal failing or individual aberrance of the mind.
Lots of people live alone as they get older, and most of them won’t end up like Bell. His was a story worth telling, but it is not the whole story of how “bad” and “death” now overlap. If we’re looking for a problem that is quintessentially American, there is really only one that every aging person shares: we all face a health industry—and by default, a death industry—that treats patients as purchasers. Forget the crazy cat ladies and the scary hoarders and all the other reductive stereotypes that get trotted out to prompt a shiver of “There but for the grace of God go I.” Here’s a fable that should really chill our veins: in a country of mind-boggling wealth, health outcomes are as divergent as our incomes, professional care is held hostage by profit, and more often than not, the kind of death you get is the best one you can buy.
The command to improve yourself to avoid a lonely death is not just a social media meme; it is the white noise that drowns out our calls to improve end-of-life care in the United States. It masks the real challenges that some elders face by diverting attention to self-betterment—and away from systemic issues like poverty, racial and gender disparity, lack of caregiver resources, and a health care system that saves its best for those who can pay top dollar.
We think we know what failure looks like in our grand meritocracy—obsolescence, uselessness, the wrong consumer choice—and that’s what we imagine a bad death looks like too. But this picture is a product of reverse-engineering; we work backward from the remedies we’re sold. Before swallowing, we might pause to remember something about our innovative market solutions: they have a funny way of floating free of real-world problems.
The command to improve yourself to avoid a lonely death is not just a social media meme; it is the white noise that drowns out our calls to improve end-of-life care in the United States.
Consider the case of the “The Lonely Death of George Bell,” a New York Times feature that ignited readers’ imaginations in 2015 by detailing, with no little melodrama, the solitary end of a man with few friends, no immediate family members, and a longstanding hoarding problem.
While fifty thousand New Yorkers die each year, as N. R. Kleinfield wrote, “A much tinier number die alone in unwatched struggles. No one collects their bodies. No one mourns the conclusion of a life. They are just a name added to the death tables. In the year 2014, George Bell, age 72, was among those names.” Even so, as soon as this macabre tale hit the newspaper, Bell’s death became a metonym for the plight of America’s aging baby boomers.
The Japanese, adding to their rich and ancient vocabulary of loss, have given it a name: kodokushi, or “lonely death,” meaning the quiet but messy end of a solitary life. With family far away and neighbors respectfully or distractedly distant, a decomposing body can sear its dark shape into the dirty mattress or the floor boards of a home, to be found days, weeks, or even years later.
Dying alone is seen as a character flaw—an imperfection growing somewhere deep inside of you that, provided it is caught in time, can be rooted out or zapped away.
Multiple factors over the past few decades have made Japan ripe for the kodokushi coinage: an astounding 26 percent of the Japanese population is now over the age of sixty-five, the result of a post-war baby boom and a long-declining birth rate. Elders increasingly live longer and live alone, separate from the daughters and daughters-in-law who would once have been their caregivers. And the Japanese economy took a nasty hit in the 1990s (soon after kodokushi first came into use), pushing aging adults out of the work force and relegating them to poverty, isolation, and less respected roles in society.