Monday, October 17, 2005

Seeing my own death

Here is a fascinating, disturbing, illuminating exercise from David Augsberger (Fuller prof). Try it at your own risk.

Seeing one’s own death is like looking at the sun – possibly only for a second without the dark glasses of denial. But one can think about the sun, and one can visualize death.

Reflect on the answers or expectations that rise from these questions about your time of death.
How old am I?
Where am I? What is this place? How do I feel about it?
What do I see as I look around me? What sounds and smells are there?
What have I been doing with my life just before this time?
Who is with me?
What are they saying to me?
What do I want to say to them?
What are important aspects of your dying?

Reflect on the picture which has emerged for you. What were the primary feelings awakened in you? What resistances did you discover within yourself? What insights about your values, your hopes, fears, loves do you gain?

Think further about this picture. Perhaps you have imagined a 'good' death. How will you cope if your dying is not 'good'? Can you imagine that what might be 'good' for you may be unacceptable for someone else?

Have you gained something that would be of help to another who is dying?

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