So what does the “die before you die” quote mean? There is no way around it, everyone dies. No one gets out alive. We all go through it, we all face it, and we all experience death, sooner or later. There is no avoidance of the event, even though many have tried to figure out ways around mortality of the physical body. So far, no one has found the magic formula for immortality of the physical form. If someone does, what a marketable product it will be!
No one wants to die. Lots of people want to live forever, so it seems. Since ancient days, the fountain of eternal youth has been fervently pursued. Even today, anti-aging pursuits are highly funded and attended to by many researchers. Humans are always trying to find a way to prolong life, at all costs, some even quite nefarious.
Humans live longer now than they have before, though, so the work of finding ways to prolong life have obviously paid off. The average life span is longer than it’s ever been. The “die before you die” quote is not the underlying idea here! (wink : )
The fear of death is what causes us to make certain decisions, whether we are conscious of them or not. You might think it’s silly to think that a lot of your decisions are based on your ideas about survival of the organism, but is it? Many people make decisions about what kind of career they are going to have, where they are going to live, who they are going to live with, and much more, all based on the underlying concerns about survival and the desire to live. You might not be conscious of that playing a role in any of the decisions about your life you’ve made, but it has. To die before you die doesn’t mean dying, though! I’ll get to that in a moment.
Wanting To Go Home?
Some people want to leave, especially those who have had very difficult lives. Some people are suicidal. Many of them are ones who have been abused as children and haven’t healed yet. If they give it enough time, they will heal, but most are young and don’t know that time indeed does heal all. Healing will come, but great effort must be made for that kind of healing. It is very deep damage. It takes a very brave soul to pull the trigger. Even the most suicidal of people cannot do it. It is a very decisive thing to do.
If you really check it out, even suicidal people don’t really want to die, though. Some say the “die before you die” quote can be twisted into a distorted idea, but it does not have anything to do with suicide. These suicidal ones simply reach a state of despair so deep that they don’t see any way out of the emotional pain. If they could live without pain in the emotions and mind, if they could become successful in their lives, they would be happy to stay here. Not many people really want to experience the “die before you die” quote in that way.
The thing is, no one gets out alive, suicidal or not. We all have to face it. Sometimes it’s something that comes quick and there is no time to have fear, and other times it is long, drawn out, painful and the fear of death is fully explored and played out. If this happens, it is an opportunity for true enlightenment while still in the physical form. It is also an opportunity to become a beautiful teacher and mentor to those around you through the peace that you face death with.
The thing I often suggest to people who are in fear or experience anxiety is to cut right to the chase. Face the primal fear of death and die before you die. Bypass all the fears and get down to the bottom of it. The biggest fear we all have is about death, and none other. Once that is faced, all other fears literally disappear into nothingness. There is nothing deeper than that particular fear.
The Buddhists: “Die Before You Die” Quote
What does that mean to die before you die in the Buddhist sense? How can you do that? You might have heard this “die before you die” quote before but not many people really understand what it means.
To die before you die is not literal, of course. Rather, it is symbolic. Right now, you think of yourself as a human who is mortal, having a birth and a death, an ending to who you are. You see yourself as an individual, a particular identity, with a particular name, collection of experiences, strengths and weaknesses. This is a mortal being, one that does not have an eternal aspect. Once the life is over, that’s it. The end. In a way, this personality does indeed have only one life to live.
Sure, if you’re lucky, you might have made your mark on the world and left behind something people might remember for a few hundred years or so, but that doesn’t really matter to you once you are on the other side and have left. The reality of it is that you are done with the life, and you as a human are annihilated, as the individual you see yourself as right now. That is what death is. An ending. No more. Kaput.
To die before you die in the Buddhist sense of the term means to face your death. Face your mortality. Face the end of this personality. It doesn’t mean dying. It means making peace with your mortality and that there is an ending to this life that is absolutely inevitable, no two ways about it.
When you face your inevitable death and you are at peace with that, you can live a fearless life then. This fear is removed. You no longer make decisions based on the primal instinct for survival. Sure, you’ll still get off the tracks if there is a train coming, but you will no longer make your decisions from a place of fear. Rather, you will make your decisions from a place of peace, trust and surrender to whatever is going to happen. You will take the risks you might not have otherwise taken, like starting that business you always wanted to start, or enter that relationship you might have otherwise avoided. You are not afraid anymore.
Some might say this is an ego death we are talking about with the “die before you die” quote, but it goes deeper than that. It is literally facing your fear of death and finding peace with it, literally ending your fear of death.
You’re Not Really A Human
If you really want to know, you are not really a human. You are eternal being having the experience of being a human. You are Godself dreaming, pretending that it is an individual, forgetting who it really is in order to have the experience of individuality amongst other versions of self that see themselves as individual humans. God is your consciousness, and you are the expression of that consciousness. It is not the other way around.
You never stopped being eternal Godself, even as you live an entire human lifetime. You have always been immortal. To die before you die means you get in touch with the immortal part of yourself and realize yourself as immortal being. It is not something you attain or achieve, or even earn. Immortality, eternal life, that is already your nature and consistency. It is what you are already made of.
What it means to “die before you die” is to face this idea of being mortal, having an end, and realize it for the illusion that it is. If you realize yourself as eternal being, you have symbolically already died. It is facing the fear of death and realizing that death actually isn’t real. It is just a doorway into a new and different adventure. Sure, the dream of being a human ends, but you don’t end.
You Can’t Die!
You cannot die even if you wanted to! Those who commit suicide often get to the other side and realize life goes on. They do get a break from the emotional pain they were in as a human, and sometimes the lifetime itself was about having the experience of being suicidal and going through with it, but consciousness does not end. How can Godself end? It is impossible.
What happens at death is the identity of being a human ends and a greater identity is entered. It is an identity that contains the experience of being the human individual that you were. This larger identity is Godself, All That Is, Source. It is all One Self living all these lives, and you are within that One Self. It really is Oneness, more than you can imagine.
Consciousness, God, is a literal sea of consciousness. You could think of yourself as one molecule in that sea of consciousness. That doesn’t mean you aren’t still the ocean, even as you realize yourself as the molecule of water within that ocean. You are both at the same time.
Realize what and who you really are and die before you die. Realize that your consciousness remains after death. It is what you were before birth. With this understanding you will remove all fears. All of them! There is nothing that can hurt you once you realize this about yourself. Once you have died to the idea that you are a mortal human, you are free! Not even a bad experience can hurt you. You know that all experiences and events are illusions, appearing and disappearing in the realms of consciousness. You remain, no matter what happens.
This is the path to a fearless and fruitful life, a life worth living, walking as an immortal on the face of the Earth, even as you dream yourself to be a mortal human. Once you have entered this realm of self realization, you are no longer an ordinary person! You are eternal being, dreaming that it is a human. Yes, there will be ups and downs, failures and successes, hurts and love, but all of it will be experienced from a state of no fear if you die before you die!
By Christine Breese, Ph.D.
University of Metaphysical Sciences
Gaia Sagrada Retreat Center
Free Retreats 4 All
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