Chronicle of a Stem Cell Transplant (and on through to the other side)

Friday, March 27, 2009

Well, It's One Way to Spend the Weekend

All my bags are packed, I'm ready to go...

So, I'm off to explore death.

Don't worry, I'm not planning to kick it anytime soon, though the proverbial bus can always come flying around the corner (and it is possible to have cancer and be hit by a bus, just ask one of my dear Callanish friends).

I am attending a workshop called "The Sacred Work of Dying" where we will "deeply explore the sacred work of preparing for death...and draw from centuries-old practices to identify and dissolve emotional and spiritual obstacles to peace of mind and heart."

Is it weird to be excited about this?

I, like the Dalai Lama (because we are soooo similar), get a kick out of the notion that as human beings, the only thing we can be certain of is the inevitability of our own death, yet we try to avoid thinking about it our whole lives.

I also don't believe in all the superstition around death - that by thinking about it, we attract it. In his beautiful book Anam Cara, John O'Donahue writes that "when you were born, [death] came out of the womb with you, but with the excitement of your arrival, nobody noticed it. Though this presence surrounds you, you may still be blind to its companionship."

I think, then, I'd prefer to make friends rather than enemies with this "silent companion." Who knows, we may even hit it off.