Many people do not like to think about death yet it is what I discuss with many in my regular work with grief. For this post, I thought I would remind you about the death and rebirth cycles that all of us experience.
The simplest place to start is realizing that when we go to bed at night, our mind “dies” in deep sleep as we are not consciously aware of anything, although we realize when we are going to sleep, that we are going to sleep(usually!), and realize upon waking that our sleep is over. In effect, we “died” through that time. For those that wake up a couple of times (or more) through the sleeping time, you are going through more than one death and rebirth cycle if you are able to get into deep sleep between waking times. Dreaming time includes the mind and sometimes the body but often people are not in conscious-control of what they are seeing/experiencing/doing, so there is an absence of conscious participation but a bit of subconscious participation.
Then we can look at our lives in general. You are not the 3-year old that you once were. That body, mind, intellect and awareness is different today. You are likely not a pre-teen or young teenager today either. Those experiences and identification of who you were are different than what you identify with today. Those have died. Today’s you, is reborn.
So now let’s combine these two ideas, each day is a rebirth of you. Who you were yesterday will have changed in some ways today. You’ll have some new cells in your body and will be eliminating old cells. So much change happens in us each day that is not noticeable to ourselves. But run into a friend you haven’t seen in 10 years and you will notice changes in them. The changes might be physical, they might be in their education or title, they might be in their style of dressing, and much may be in through the life experiences that have shaped them. Depending on how much the person shares (or even knows) and how perceptive you are, you may or may not notice the deeper changes. But they are there. Personalities and mannerisms may be very similar, but we are all changed through our own experiences. Sometimes this happens consciously and most times unconsciously.
The benefit of consciously understanding our personal changes (especially those that happen within ourselves) is that we become mindful in truly participating in life. This is the joy of truly living. Many people awaken one day to a realization that they are not truly living their lives as Oscar Wilde’s quotation below reminds us.
I have worked with many older clients and I have heard so many regrets and so much fear. Often in those times it is as they work through a chronic illness diagnosis and it’s one of the saddest things to hear these regrets at those times.
When I hear similar things from mid-life or younger clients I am so happy to help them first work through painful emotions and experiences that have accumulated already from life experiences and then to work with ways to guide their lives forward in healthier and more satisfying ways. Yet as you may know, when most people are younger, they are often most interested in working through a current life/health/relationship crisis. And then jumping right back onto the treadmill of life.
The number of people that are ready to do the deeper and complete work is quite small. Older clients feeling it’s too late to think/do differently with minds filled with regrets; mid-lifers at peak-ego times feeling they already know all they need to know and are doing things right or burnt-out from juggling unhealthy schedules and not realizing taking time out for deeper healing will help here too; younger minds feeling that there is always more time to do this. And how much time do we each think we have? Life moves very fast. This is what I have noticed anyways. Yet, for the small group of people that is truly ready to take the time and energy to do this work, the results and rewards are immeasurable. I personally never imagined I would have pulled myself off that treadmill, and I have to say it feels like a beautiful rebirth!
I certainly encourage anyone interested in directing their lives positively to invest the time and dedication into doing this work earlier in life to help shape the rest of life in a consciously-creative way. For younger minds, it’s never too soon, and older minds, it’s never too late. You’ll just know in your heart when you are truly ready.
Wishing you a beautiful experience of stepping off the treadmill! I look forward to helping you if you reach out for assistance.
With Kindness and Compassion for all of us,