My death is good—at least in theory. The realization of such an agreement with this unavoidable reality of life would be the accomplishment of a sage. At best, I can only attempt to approximate it.

Meditation on this simple statement “my death is good” can be a powerful imaginative exercise. It opens us to the heart of Zhuangzi’s vision of total affirmation of the life experience. There is a real sense in which his philosophy could be summed up in one word—Yes! (And this is always followed in my experience with—Thank you!—though I am not sure why.)

In the previous post I spoke of the importance of death for an appreciation of life to the point that it could have been taken as morbidity. Since it is an unavoidable fact of life, however, to ignore it amounts to denial; and denial can only be a phantom escape. It simply lurks deeper and more insidiously. Had we the choice, we’d likely choose not to die, but since we do not, death presents as a wonderful opportunity to get real about our human experience.

“The Great Clump burdens me with a physical form, labors me with life, rests me with death. So, it is precisely because I consider my life good that I consider my death good.” (Ziporyn; 6:26) Taken as a single unit, life and death are both affirmable, should we wish to affirm either. And we do affirm life, if we are in harmony with life itself which is by its nature a spontaneous affirmation.

The affirmation of death is an affirmation of the Totality, and there can be no such affirmation without it. I call it The Great Mess in recognition of the difficulty we have in doing so, and declare that All Is Well, in recognition of the possibility of affirmingly “basking it all in the broad daylight of Heaven”. These represent the Two Roads we must walk simultaneously.

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