How to Embrace Death, Overcome Fear, and Live Without Regret
“If death causes you no pain when you’re dead, it’s foolish to allow the fear of it to cause you pain now.” — Epicurus
I don’t know you, but if you’re anything like me, I can assume that you’re scared of dying.
You’re afraid of the unknown.
You’re worried about the inevitable moment in which your body & mind ceases to exist.
You’re scared of disappearing into eternal nothingness.
But death is a beautiful aspect of life. For without the darkness, there can be no light.
“We have two lives. And the second begins when we realize we have only one.” — Confucius
Sooner or later, you are going to die.
Which is why now is the perfect time to welcome death, and use your lack of fear to live each moment without regret.
Are you ready? Let’s begin…
You Need To Embrace Your Mortality
Death is a fear that has played on the minds of humanity for millennia and instantly puts our mortality into perspective. In the words of Epicurus:
“If death causes you no pain when you’re dead, it’s foolish to allow the fear of it to cause you pain now.”
What matters is the present moment, the immediate future, and the actions we take which allow us to live a life of fulfillment & gratitude.
Don’t let the fear of death stop you from living; That would be foolish. Instead, a better solution is to embrace your mortality.
The Latin phrase “Memento Mori” is often referenced by stoics & philosophers when coming to terms with our existence. Translating to “remember death,” it serves as a symbolic reminder to live each day as if it were your last. After all, it is Marcus Aurelius who famously stated, “it is not death that a man should fear, but he should fear never beginning to live.”
The number of days left in our life is insignificant; It’s what we do with them that counts.
Since I was a young child, death has played a significant role in coming to terms with my mortality. Like many children, the loss of a pet was my first experience in understanding the fragility of life.
I found myself locked in my bedroom, crying uncontrollably, wanting my pet Rabbit to come back. But no matter how long I wept, or how much I prayed, nothing could be done to bring him back to life.
This was the moment in which my whole perspective on life changed.
How To Overcome Fear
I now believe that we should not fear death, for it is a natural part of life. As Mozart so eloquently wrote:
“Death, when we come to consider it closely, is the true goal of our existence. I have formed during the last few years such close relationships with this best and truest friend of mankind that his image is not only no longer terrifying to me, but is indeed very soothing and consoling.”
The strength to reconcile our mortality is truly something to be respected. As the acceptance of such event forces us to live each day with a sense of purpose & meaning. Mozart continues to say:
“I thank my God for graciously granting me the opportunity of learning that death is the key which unlocks the door to our true happiness.”
We can’t foretell our death, so taking advantage of this fantastic opportunity called life is the best way to live without regret.
Hanging on my bedroom wall is a quote from Marcus Aurelius, who so perfectly speaks about living in the moment:
“Don’t behave as if you are destined to live forever. What’s fated hangs over you. As long as you live and while you can, become good now.”
Today could be the last day of your life. Live it with kindness, gratitude, and without regret.