The fear of death is deep-seated, hardwired into our bodies and subconscious. But every single living thing—and human being—will go through the process of dying. While we witness it happening to others and know intellectually that it will happen to ourselves, many of us avoid thinking about it as much as possible. But when a culture avoids death, sidelining it from social spaces and public discussion, it can make addressing our discomfort, anxiety, fear, and curiosity about death an isolating experience. When we are then confronted with death close to us, we can have difficulty processing the emotions we are faced with and end up in an existential or spiritual crisis. Many traditions believe that incorporating a healthy discussion of death in day-to-day life actually helps release us from the fear of dying and lets us live freer, more vibrant lives.
Tami Simon interviews Ram Dass and Mirabai Bush, who have written a new beautiful book, called Walking Each Other Home: Conversations on Loving and Dying. It explores what it means to live and die consciously, remembering who we really are, and illuminating the path that we all walk together.