Here’s a game for bold people.
Suppose you could choose your moment of death – I’m not talking about suicide – I mean choosing at the deepest level the exact moment you’d die of whatever cause. I’m not saying you can. I’m not saying you can’t. I’m suggesting it as an experimental existential stance, something to play with for the day and see what happens in terms of perspective shifts and internal power level changes one way or the other. I’m suggesting playing the role of crazy alchemist, the sorcerer of your own life.
Though probably for the sake of being responsible, I must warn that if you’ve a history of mental instability, it might be best to skip this whole notion. If in doubt, of course, consult your trusty doctor or medical practitioner, who’ll probably think you’re totally insane for asking and have you sectioned or put on anti-depressants or antibiotics anyway.
But assuming you’re a bold, relatively mentally stable person, here’s what to do. Assume you have the power to choose your own moment of death. Decide when it will be. Give yourself the option of changing your mind if you want afterwards.
Then once you’ve determined when it will be, again reminding yourself this is just a game and in itself has no intrinsic truth or otherwise, thereby eschewing superstitious tendencies, picture yourself going, preferably free of pain, leaving your body graciously and easily with a smile on your original face as you cross through into whatever awaits on the other side, your consciousness fully intact and your spirit radiant with joy no matter what: joy for having tasted the greatest miracle we know (life on earth as a human) and joy for being about to taste whatever comes after, even though you have no clue what it might be.
Then spend a moment or two doing the impossible: imagining a world without you in it, and as you catch the odd glimpse or two, bless that world and everyone in it with the same peace and joy you’re feeling yourself, by way of your bequest and ultimate contribution.
Coming back to the present again afterwards, give thanks for being alive and for all the wonderful people, experiences, things and possibilities your world has to offer and adjust the projected moment of death if needs be.
However, to preclude an attack of deluded, existential megalomania and possible consequent psychospiritual dishevelment, remind yourself vehemently that, as far as we can validly say, only the Tao knows when you’ll die and then surrender in grace to not knowing when that will be, surrender in grace to being alive.
May you live long and prosper.