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Started by Stellata on Dec 29, 2018 12:06:18 PM
Fear of death

Irvin Yalom suggested there are two particular ways people defend themselves against their own fear of death:

1. ‘I am special’, where people convince themselves they are special and will somehow escape the inevitability of death. These people might take risks and overly work themselves.

2. ‘Ultimate rescuer’, where people believe that someone or something will ultimately rescue them from the inevitability of death.

I fall firmly into the former category, with the latter having never occurred to me. While logically I know that there is nothing special about me and that I am going to die, I have always lived with the strange, arrogant notion that I am too special for it to actually happen. Although I might avoid leaving the house for a couple of days now I’ve started this thread.

Do you identify with either of these categories?

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HoHoHoff - 29 Dec 2018 12:11:46 (#1 of 233)

I don't fear death because I accept its inevitability. I'm not much looking forward to the bit beforehand as my pain threshold is rubbish.

HoHoHoff - 29 Dec 2018 12:13:05 (#2 of 233)

However, one of my life goals is to croak with a bit of dignity, in part to maybe help others do so more peacefully.

solomongursky - 29 Dec 2018 12:15:00 (#3 of 233)

Die peacefully in your sleep, unlike your screaming-in-terror passengers.

Gotout - 29 Dec 2018 12:25:09 (#4 of 233)

I've turned 70 so I've outlived a lot of people I have known. I regard death as something which is getting closer but doesn't bother me at all.

thisonehasalittlehat - 29 Dec 2018 12:29:19 (#5 of 233)

Boo!!

widenation - 29 Dec 2018 12:30:43 (#6 of 233)

A DMT trip might be a good way to go.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/bbcthree/article/dd52796e-5935-414e-af0c-de9686d02afa

RosyLovelady - 29 Dec 2018 12:44:45 (#7 of 233)

< I regard death as something which is getting closer but doesn't bother me at all. >

You're very lucky. It bothers me a lot, though a small dose of Pregabalin helps to move it down the list of botherations.

Gotout - 29 Dec 2018 12:53:05 (#8 of 233)

Rosy, I lived for many years with an invalid wife. My biggest fear was dying and leaving her to struggle without my support. After she died I had no reason to worry about dying before her.

RosyLovelady - 29 Dec 2018 12:54:26 (#9 of 233)

Top respect to you, Gotout.

HerrWalrus - 29 Dec 2018 12:55:30 (#10 of 233)

It's quite possible (I would have thought normal) to accept you're going to die, but to fear a messy and/or painful end.

wickeltisch - 29 Dec 2018 13:02:19 (#11 of 233)

I don't fear death. It means life is over and I don't exist anymore, hence I also cannot feel anything anymore.

Dying otoh is more frightening. Not everyone dies peacefully in their sleep without noticing. As Hoff says, it can be painful and full of suffering.

on edit: see also #10

RosyLovelady - 29 Dec 2018 13:03:28 (#12 of 233)

I worry about what might happen afterwards. Scientists have not yet been able to persuade me of their certain knowledge that there's nothing there, though I keep on hoping. My late mother, on the other hand, always hoped that she would be reunited with my father (who died long before she did) after death.

Does anyone else hope to be reunited with their family? I'm not sure I do.

wickeltisch - 29 Dec 2018 13:04:29 (#13 of 233)

Does anyone else hope to be reunited with their family?

I'd like to meet my father again, but the rest can fuck off.

Shadrack22 - 29 Dec 2018 13:10:58 (#14 of 233)

I like being alive and fear endless extinction.

Shadrack22 - 29 Dec 2018 13:12:15 (#15 of 233)

More or less my view:

https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/48422/aubad
e-56d229a6e2f07

foghorn - 29 Dec 2018 13:14:11 (#16 of 233)

I´ve been resuscitated. I died in an ambulance. I´ve also experienced the thoughts and process of preparation for my own death in other circumstances. We are all in the process of dying, but sometimes it gets accelerated. Its nothing to fear and I honestly don´t. But life just looks so much more worth enjoying and appreciating after it and my most profound thought is that I would much prefer to be alive. Second most profound thought is not to waste so much of it on not living. I don´t mean bucket list sort of living. Everyday life is an amazing buzz.

RosyLovelady - 29 Dec 2018 13:16:28 (#17 of 233)

When I get round to writing my great first novel, I might call it Postmen Like Doctors, from that poem.

Stellata - 29 Dec 2018 13:18:06 (#18 of 233)

Second most profound thought is that don´t waste so much of it on not living. I don´t mean bucket list sort of living. Everyday life is an amazing buzz.

Yes! Absolutely. I’m getting stupidly excited about the first magnolia blossoms.

bossab2 - 29 Dec 2018 13:21:38 (#19 of 233)

And infinite period of nothingness.

What it does do is make you realise how stupid and pathetic are most of the things which humans waste their lives on.

wickeltisch - 29 Dec 2018 13:24:57 (#20 of 233)

#15 That's what I most agree with in that poem:

No rational being can fear a thing it will not feel

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