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The Metaphysical View of Death and Life After Death Part 1

Humanity throughout the ages have seen death as something loathsome and gruesome; something dreadful, something preferable to avoid at all cost–that is, if a choice were given–but without any other option, are forced to succumb for lack of any power over its occurrence. Anticipating the termination of life at an unexpected moment and the possible prospect of annihilation of self-identity, humanity views death as a state or condition to be feared. This fear is sustained when all around, most of the dying are seen to seemingly suffer in anguish and in agony in the death process. The fear of death is actually man’s fear of the unknown, and it indicates man’s bondage to his ignorance which ultimately grows into superstitious expressions. Because of the underlying fear, man attempts laboriously to postpone death through medicine and other means; medical science has, however, not yet found a way to prolong life indefinitely–or to ease one’s fears, to offer solace, or to answer profound questions regarding this ancient mystery. Knowing the true nature of death releases man from his bondage to his fears and to the clinging of his varied superstitions pertaining to it. Such knowledge based upon personal experience may be acquired–beliefs to the contrary places an illusory boundary upon the unfolding soul. Alice Bailey, writing for the Tibetan in “A Treatise on White Magic,” refers to man’s fears regarding death:

“The mind of man is so little developed that fear of the unknown, terrors of the unfamiliar, and attachment to form have brought a situation where one of the most beneficent occurrences in the life cycle of an incarnating Son of God is looked upon as something to be avoided and postponed for as long a time as possible.” (1972:494)

We can see from her statement that one of the factors that causes man to struggle against death, is the attachment to form. The identification of the Self with the physical form misleads https://gurikaraoke.com/
one into thinking that the dissolution of the physical body results in the annihilation of the Self. Sri Sankaracharya, the eminent exponent of Advaita Vedanta, taught that the deluded mind with its beliefs in the reality of form causes bondage to Maya, or Cosmic Illusion. Philosophically speaking, this is the state of duality, and unless man perceives the One Reality underlying the dualistic worlds, and as his true nature, he lives in fear and in a state of slavery. What is Real cannot be destroyed, what is unreal does not exist apart from our false perception and understanding. This is avidya, or ignorance. To apprehend the true state of things is to be truly liberated from death. One’s consciousness is expanded and raised to a divine estate when Reality is known and death seen for what it really is. What Bailey does not mention is that the soul-process of “death” may be experienced in the meditative state. Mystics call this “dying while living,” and advanced mystics have reached a state where they may predetermine and trigger the time and process of their physical and mystical deaths–these are executed with divine permission. Mystical deaths offers one the opportunity to acquire the beautific vision called Marifatullah by Islamic gnostics. We will not dwell on this mystical aspect in this paper but focus more on the physical side of death and dying.

Before continuing further, let us first provide a definition of the branch of study dealing with death. The study is properly termed, “Thanatology” (from Greek thanatos, “death”). The Encyclopedia Britannica explains it thus: