by Wanda Badwal.
A few weeks ago I woke up from a bad dream in the middle of the night, still filled with the terrorizing fear from my dream, one of those dreams you think is real, and when you wake up it takes you a while to realize that it was just a dream, you know those?!
I dreamed of a huge, big, angry and wild grizzly bear. Me and my friends where stuck in a house and the grizzly bear tried with his power to come in, the world outside was burning, we were trapped, trying to put furniture in front of the doors and windows,it was just in matter of time before he would break through the door. I was in shock when I woke up, sweat on my forehead and feeling my heart beating, I walked outside the bedroom and tried to remind myself that it was just a dream.
Responsible for this terrifying dream was, by the way, the movie The Revenent“ with Leo DiCaprio (who’s finally got an oscar, YESSS!), loved the movie but’s intense as the dream shows…However, dream analysis shows that our dreams often arise from the subconscious level or an underlining fear we are dealing with. This dream didn’t take much analyzing, it was obvious: The fear of dying, the fear of death.
Living in Bali, in a foreign country, I am often confronted with fears, especially when the night gets dark. All the houses are more open than in the west, you hear strange and unfamiliar jungle noises and animals can get in more easily. One of my biggest fears are big spiders, (yes I am a typical girl) but if there is one thing i really don’t like something, then its big spiders. One of my admired masters, Osho says, “The core of every fear is the fear of death”. Maybe on the surface this is not always so obvious, but when we dig deeper we can see that the fear of water, the fear of heights and the fear of falling all originate with our fundamental fear of death. Fear of a spiders is the same, a primal fear that goes back to our ancestors that lived in caves and had to be aware of dangerous animals. Grizzly bears of course are far more dangerous than spiders especially when they are angry 😉
So I sat there in the dark, contemplating this uncomfortable fear of death. And yet, this is perhaps the only ultimate truth in the world, and one we have very little control over, or do we?! So isn’t it funny that we spend most of our lives trying to control everything around us to avoid facing it?!
I asked myself: How secure can we ever be? Even we have security guard on the door like here in bali? Even if you have 5 or more insurance policies like people have in Germany where I come from – An insurance for the household, for sickness, for stealing, for work and for getting older. What really guarantees that you will be more secure because of that? I love Western culture but I also think we are a fear based society, trying to secure ourselves, our beloved ones and our world as much as possible so that we don’t have to face the fact that really we have less control than we would like.
Nothing to judge about it, because we all want to live. But if we are honest, this security is a mental illusion, we arrange our life as comfortably as possible and wrap ourselves inside that bubble of security. The reality is, sorry to say, we are never safe, and at the same time we are totally safe.
Hah?! Why is that? Lets have a look at what Buddha and the yogic philosophy has to say abut that:
“The only permanent in life is change“ – The Buddha
We are very good at pushing away the uncomfortable thought of death and the reality of it. Most of the time in our everyday lives we forget about it, because its such a painful and cruel reality that this beautiful and fun ride is over one day. It’s sad, its really sad. And we wake up once in a while when we pass a graveyard or a funeral, or our neighbor or grandma dies. The reality is, each moment, even right now as you are reading this, hundreds or thousands of people, animals and plants are dying on this planet. Its is the natural process of life. Disney’s Lion King says it perfectly: Its the Circle of Life!
If you want a little colorful pick-me-up, watch here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GibiNy4d4gc
In the yogic philosophy and the teachings of the Buddha, all of us will pass away eventually as a part of the natural process of birth, old-age and death and that we should always keep in mind the impermanence of life, the life that we all cherish and wish to hold on to. However, the good news is, at least from the yogic and buddhist perspective, death is not the end of life! Yee-hoo!!!
In classical yoga philosophy, the soul and the body are separate entities, we are a soul inhabiting a body. The Tantric path, an offshoot of yoga philosophy, believes the soul and the universe are one. Who knows if that is true, but that’s what I love about the tantric path, it doesn’t ask whether a belief is true or not, or good or bad, it simply asks whether it serves you. Whether it makes life more fulfilling, gives you hope and fills you with joy. For me, it serves me to believe that there is a soul and that its infinite, immortal and that I am one with everything. Doesn’t that sound good?!
We are all one. Death is just as much a part of life as life is a part of death.
Same same but different 😉