April 22, 2014
Everything that you’ve ever known, thought about, or experienced, was the ultimate result of collapsing stars. This isn’t conjecture, it’s hard science. Doesn’t matter whether we want to acknowledge it or not: we are all connected. Everything around us–hell, us included–is just a different manifestation of stuff that was previously something else: all the molecules and atoms, all the different elements that were created by different types of stars, they’re all we are. This shouldn’t be a source of a fear, but of wonderment, and for me, it’s a spiritual feeling of connectedness. Looking up at the night sky, what I see, what we all see, are the galactic parents and family members to us all–the stars, both living and dead.
We only appear to be separate because that’s how we are manifested today. But once we’re “gone,” we’re not really gone at all, our atoms, our molecules, and everything that is “us,” is simply reintegrated into this dimension in another form. It’s the one natural thing that we all share.
I’ve often said that “in the absence of information, people tend to think the worst.” I think that’s true in so many instances, but it’s probably most especially accurate when it comes to death. We don’t really know what happens to us, and so we fear the worst. But instead of fearing this inevitable “next phase,” we should celebrate it as a continuation of our evolution as part of the most amazing show there is. All the stories and all the fear-mongering and attempts to use our fear of death against us–those were made up by people. Damaged, wonderful, insane, suffering, enlightened, manipulating, fallible humans who tried to make sense of the incomprehensible through words, allegories, metaphors, and stories of a higher power. Perhaps there is one, but I can’t imagine that humans would understand it, and it certainly makes no sense that “God is made in man’s image,” especially if one considers the high likelihood that there is life on other planets (would God be considered only human if there are many other lifeforms in the universe that don’t look anything like humans? I ask.)
On this Earth Day, instead of fearing the reaper and adhering to our individual mortal coils as if they were the only thing that “we are,” perhaps we should just simply embrace the certainty that we will become, again, part of, not separate from, everything. That and let’s be kinder to the planet, shall we? It’s been through quite a lot to give rise to us.
Neil deGrasse Tyson explains it so, so well:
Yours in Mental Hygiene,
The Ancient Brain and Modern Mindfulness