Freaking about death, old age, and thinking everyone must be nuts

Freaking out about death. That is, being a rotting piece of meat in a coffin with no guarantee there is an after-life. People will say that it's a depressing thought, but it is the reality. Reality. Reality.

And to get to that rotting piece of meat in a coffin, one often passes through old age and old age that carries with it a high probability of senility and/or cancer and/or Parkinson's and/or...the list goes on.

And if we live to old age, it will happen relatively soon when one really grasps. really grasps, that the earth is billions of years old and our life is a mere blink. A mere BLINK in history and most of us will just be names in a census record. Just names. Reality.

What really gets me is how medicine acts like depression is a disease. In some cases, it may be. But my God, who wouldn't be depressed if one truly, truly, has grasped that he is going to die (rot away in the earth) and the possibility that religion and its heaven, angels, God, etc. may just be a story, a fairy tale, made up by the human animal who Cannot, Cannot, handle that in a relatively short amount of time, he and the people he loves will be nothing but a bag of bones...too painful and so he invents these stories...and everyone thinks his story, his religion, is the Only right one. The only.

So medicine gives us a "happy" pill, a denial pill I call it. Happy and non anxious when we will all relatively soon have flesh rotting off our bones? That pill, that is indeed nuts.

I say let's learn to face reality with courage. Where is the group support for this? Everyone running from the truth. Face with courage what will soon happen and at least have hope that we do indeed have a spirit (and if we do then the other animals, like dogs and cats, do as well...let's not be egocentric and think that we are special in life...we eat and belch and fart and urinate just like the other animals), one which amazingly transcends death (although of the billions and Billions--think about it--who have died, none have come back to tell us otherwise (unless you happen to be Christian and think your religion is the Only Right one).

Does anyone really get what I'm saying?

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  • When despair for the world grows in me

    and I wake in the night at the least sound

    in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be,

    I go and lie down where the wood drake

    rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.

    I come into the peace of wild things

    who do not tax their lives with forethought

    of grief. I come into the presence of still water.

    And I feel above me the day-blind stars

    waiting with their light. For a time

    I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

  • Absolutely beautiful there are wonderful things all around us to lift our spirits😃

  • o my who knows how long im haveing problems also do not know how much i can standeather

  • Try and concentrate just on getting through the day...make the best bacon sarnie you ever have eaten....walk until you are exhausted...are you lonely ?

  • Please don't dispair. We were like animals and even then God sent His son to die for us. All we have to do is claim Jesus as ours and we will have eternal life. If we do then there is no coffin.

  • Hi Anna Bettina, what you say is indeed correct but!!! If you wake up feeling and thinking that way everyday you seriously would be thinking what's the point!! Everybody's life is a trial, we are continuously tested on a daily basis. I personally don't want to live a miserable existence while I'm here, I don't want to dwell on what's happened in the past or what the future may hold. I want to get up each day and try make the best of my day. Sometimes that's hard to do. Sometimes I have just made it through the day and other times it's been fun and productive.so what would be the point of sitting there thinking about rotting in a coffin etc etc. It's not conducive to healing yourself or putting you in a good state of mind. Yes we will all die eventually so with that in mind we should set aside some time for us !! Have goals and dreams. Something to fight for. We all need a purpose and if we feel we don't have one then find one!! Your post actually made me smile!!! If what you said isn't a reality check then I don't know what is!! i am going to my meditation and mindfulness class tonight 😀I can't wait!! Been counting the days since last week!! It's like a little bit of heaven....or the biggest cream cake ever....it takes away my anxietys and worries. Hope you have a good day too🙏🏻

  • Hi...Maybe I should pursue mindfulness training?

    I have been thinking about this mortality thing everyday and arriving at the conclusion, what's the point? Unfortunately there is no drug to take away existential depression, but the thought of life ending at the grave is so hideous to me that I have become obsessed with it...perhaps there is a drug to at least take away the obsessive part?

    I really don't know what has happened to me. Yes, I have seen the possibility that death does end at the coffin and the stories of a God, afterlife may indeed be just stories because the alternative is so hard to accept. But it's as if I now see clearly how really pathetic, in a lot of ways, the human animal is. For example, I see all the crime, the greed, greed so rampant that humankind fails to see the suffering of hunger and poverty around the world could be wiped out if each of us were to do what we should all be doing. I see the beheadings, the literal whittling off of a human being's head, people burned alive...even something far less intense but just as telling in regard to man's priority not being on his neighbor is my 91 y o neighbor that no one, a street filled with Christians, checks on except for me.

    All very hard for someone known for 50 plus years as the secular nun. Very hard.

  • I would say the point is to live your life now while you can, or You can sit and think about it till your time comes and!! Waste the time you've got dwelling on all what you believe. It won't change anything or the inevitable.i nearly died 6 months ago!! My children came and sat by my hospital bed, I saw my partner cry!! I've never seen him cry!!! I felt too ill to feel anything.when I woke up from my operation I felt what I can only explain as a whooshing sound, I felt like I'd been sucked back into my body. I opened my eyes and realised I was in hospital. For days after I saw a man sat by my bed in a green velvet suit and bowler hat!! He would sit and smile!!! The doctors told me I was a strong women because I'd survived.i can only think someone was looking over me that's why I made it and it just wasn't my time!!! I thought about dieing a lot after that!!! ive sat with people when they have died!! And believe me the person you are leaves your body!! The only thing left behind is your body! It's is indeed a horrible cruel world we live in. I can't make sense of the evil people can inflict on others. I take my time as I go through the day to offer help to people I think may need it. We could all just take a bit of time to ask if your neighbour is ok . Smile at people!! Show kindness. As for the mindfulness it's a pity everyone dosnt practice it. The world would be a much calmer and happier place to be. Try stop dwelling on that morbid stuff. It's not productive at all.

  • Are you Irish?

    Sounds just like a leprechaun

  • Hi Jennyjolly, my dad's side of the family were. I told a lady who I work with about him and she said the same as you (she's Irish too)

  • They bring good luck

    It's a great omen to actually see one xx

  • Well that's lovely to know!! I could do with some of that😀Thankyou for telling me👍🙏🏻

  • Like you I too almost died, I had a tumour in my spinal canal and after my op my ventricles collapsed in my brain.......it was peaceful...like you I had a vision of what I though to be a gaurdian angel....when I was conscious again I remember praying that Gid take my life instead if the lad in the next bed in intensive care who was known to me. He saved us both but a few years later the lad died doing what he loved..,surfing.....

    I don't fear death itself as I know it to be nothing but peace, it's the method that bothers me, though I don't dwell on it.

    You are right....do as much good in the world as you can while you are here and you will have served your purpose, even if you help just one person feel better about life.

  • It's a funny old life maribee isn't it!! And like you it's always been about the method to me also. I'm very mindful when people ask me to do something for them or want to chat. I stop and talk where as I always felt guilty before because I had so much to do in my job and someone was always waiting for something. I do hope you are doing ok now🙏🏻And regarding the lad at least when he did go like you said it was doing something he loved.youve been through so much yourself.just keep getting better and stronger all the time.take care x

  • My dad returned to see me when my neighbour was in the room too and without my saying anything told me what he said (not guessable)

    At a later date,again with someone present a good friend returned as he said he would before he passed

    In front of us the doors to garden closed and the key turned in the lock by itself

    The room had gone very cold beforehand and warmed up again afterwards. the table lamp also turned off and on by itself

    My pets have also come back

    Many years ago I had a vision in which were said to me these words

    'Do Not Fear, There Is No Death'

    My other visions, precognitive and otherwise have all come to pass

  • uncommonhelp.me/articles/de...

    Very helpful article

    I understand how you feel as I felt same for thirty years

    Meditation and the experiences I had removed the fear of death/oblivion etc completely

    It was very severe after my sister passed when I was five

    I was terrified from then on

    DP/DR etc

    The reason i'm on this site is that I have Hep C and that is a concerning situation for many reasons

  • I would love to take a meditation and mindfulness class! When & Where? ?

  • Hi, you would have too check in the area you live if anyone is doing classes.you can usually find out by googling it.

  • I get what you are saying...I only know for certain that, when I had a life/death operation for a spinal canal tumour, a few days after I came out of intensive care, the ventricles in my brain collapsed.

    I knew nothing...nothing at all

    That, I'm certain, is what it us like to be dead.

    You will feel no pain, just nothingness.

    I think it might have been Mark Twain who said-but I could be wrong- there is more to fear in life than in death.......I really think that sums it up.

    Life is hell sonetimes and it's not always what you make it- more often it's what others make it for you.

    I think sudden death syndrome must be the way to go....or in your sleep...or during an operation....or if you really have to 'do it yourself' as the NHS won't legalise euthanasia...then the way the priest did it in The Borgias seemed like a painless simple way...sit in a nice warm bath (he was in a Roman bath-house) cut your wrist, let them into the warm water and simply drift away.....morbid I know, but when somebody Is suffering Indescribable pain (and I did before I had my operations) you can't imagine a future free of suffering.

    Try not to worry though...maybe one day there will be a change of method in medecine.

    And stay strong and well.

  • I like what you say...

    But it is the knowing now, the knowing now, that the possibility exists we will all just be rotted piece of meat with no after-life, that the people--and children--we love may just disintegrate with no after-life, that we are indeed just a wink in time...it's the knowing now that is freaking me out.

    I spent my entire life believing in heaven, angels, God, etc. and then one day I woke up and I could see clearly man's huge fear of his and others' mortality and religions in general may just be a way to handle the thought of true "nothingness". How do I go from believing for 50 something years to this? To have ones' beliefs turned upside down, well, I'd rather have a disease than the torture I've been through.

    I fainted once and as I've said to people, it was pleasurable, this state of unconscious. As I said, though, it's the knowing right now, right now, that this nothingness, the disintegration that happens, with no afterlife, may be the fate of humanity in general, fate of all the billions who have preceded us and will follow us, that makes me very sad.

    I wish there were a pill to take away this existential depression. Alas, there isn't. I have tried, tried with all my might, to believe in what may be just a story, but once one has grasped what I'm saying, not just saying they grasp it, the majority of people think they have when they really haven't, there is no going back. No going back.

    Thank you for understanding. Write me anytime.

    Annie

  • Dear Annie....it's interesting to hear what you think, and what you fear. My feeling is, that it is the fear of the unknown that gives you the anxiety. In actual fact, you don't have to just'rot away'...you can be cremated...and you really won't feel a thing....I have had nerve roots removed from my spine because of a spinal tumour. A while ago, I put a very hot plate from the oven on my leg, I didn't feel a single thing, but my leg was badly burned...so I know that the process will be painless and quick....so much more comforting than lying in a cold grave for evermore. I guess it's just the thought of it. It's not death that is the problem really as all things must die...it's the manner of death...

    But we cannot predict when and how as much as we would like to. I wish there was something I could say to you to stop your worries...when your time is up, it's up...try and make the most of each day as it comes, help somebody in some small way, make your life count even if it's smiling at an old lady (like me) ....I often think of Lady Di who died so young and so tragically...it's now years gone by but she is still very much alive in Harry and her grandchildren too. And you don't know that there is no afterlife.........I remember when I was pushing out my first child I just knew that I had done that before....not in this lifetime, but at some other time...just a certainty that I felt...your fears are very real to you, of course they are, and I'd be lying if I said I had no fear of non-existence, but at other times when my life is so dreadful I feel it would be easier not to have the pain and constant worries of life.

    You don't say how old you are, if you work,have a relationship....all of these things could be making a difference to the way you are feeling.

    I'm here for you if you want to get it off your chest.

    Hugs.x

  • Maribee,

    Yes, I can be cremated. It's not the fear of rotting away...as long as I think there is an after-life. Like I said, I believed in this after-life my whole life and then one day I considered that I had just bought into a story, a story to give the human animal comfort. It is the possibility that each of us will be no more, totally no more, that makes me sad. That is, to know someone when blood is coursing through her veins, to know the significance of that life...to think that the remainders of this significance will just one day be another name in a census record, well, it makes me sad for all of humanity.

    I don't think people truly grasp this possibility. Sartre did, his Being Versus Nothingness. Other great philosophers. I wish I could face this possibility as bravely as they did, as bravely as people like Carl Sagan did.

    It is such a huge fear that my psychiatrist, when I tried to discuss my existential depression and anxiety, well, her own fear kept her from "getting it". I remember her saying, "Who says there is no afterlife or God...I know differently...I remember when my deceased parents came to me and said that they're ok, they're all having one big party." I didn't say anything but thought to myself how the human spirit in grief about the death of the people they so loved can perhaps conjure up all sorts of things in their minds, with their eyes, their ears. And I also wondered why her thinking is considered normal and yet a patient who would recount this same experience might just be labeled schizophrenic or schizotyopal with magical thinking. That's why I say we'll all nuts...the possibility of this being it is enough to make most people nuts, even psychiatrists :). Btw, I haven't been labeled as those...dr treating me for anxiety and depression (but I don't believe she realizes how profound such an existential depression can be).

    So that's my worry. Not the possibility that I will disintegrate into true "nothingness" but as I said, to know the significance of a person's life, their mind and heart, their laughter...and to have this significance possibility fade into complete nothingness (true nothingness which is hard for the human mind to conceive of), to never possibly never see this person again...yes, it makes me sad for all humanity that exists, existed, and will exist.

    Speaking of how true nothingness is so very hard for the human animal brain to conceive of, something which recently occurred to me is how the human animal brain usually always thinks in terms of a creator. We create clothes, cakes, children, buildings...and so, we limited beings think that there must be a God who created the universes. Not necessarily if we have the intelligence to think outside the hardwired human animal brain box. Hardwired in this way to encourage the perpetuation of the human species? Possibly. Believing that one will live forever, that we can transcend the grave, that in the afterlife we will all have a big party and see one another again, yeah, that view sure helps to keep the human race from dying out.

    Btw, I'm 58. I have no children but a network of friends I've had for decades.

    Thank you for being there.

  • I can tell that you are well educated and probably, as I do, read a lot....and think a lot....I sometimes wish I was the sort of person who isn't interested in stuff at all...how much easier life would be.....I hate to think of 'the end' of everything too and know that we are just specks in the fire of life....but however much I worry it's not gonna change a damn thing....and even if they create the drug to prolong life..is that really what we'd want?...not me thanks...life to me means suffering and pain..after 40 years of domestic abuse it's impossibke to imagine a life that is enjoyable and free.....I've wasted those years on an abuser who has diminished my self confidence for ever...so even if I have even 2 years left to me, once I have my decree absolute I intend to live the way I chose....to enjoy every moment I can...it's too late at 75 to find love or romance but I can enjoy my own company and like you I have brilliant supportive friends who I know I can always relying on.

    It's strange but, when I was a kid I went to Sunday school and church, I believed in an afterlife as you are taught to...as you get older and things happen you begin to doubt...I kind if flip from one opinion to the other....I prayed a lot when I had my lifesaving operation 24 years ago...and have a picture of' iam the light' on my bedroom wall which I sonetines ask for help......it does help as at least I feel I'm doing something to help myself.

    Why are you SO disappointed that there may be no afterlife ?

    I'm going on a bit here..,sorry....if you want to chat anytime, I will always listen...Maribee

  • Maribee, I'm more than disappointed that there may be no after-life because the idea of literally rotting away or being cremated to dust as the complete and final end to us is more than depressing. Especially when we consider the people we love, that we may never, never, see them again. I remember Ann Margret once saying that she would not be able to bear living if she didn't have the hope of one day seeing her much loved, deceased parents again.

    Been reading about existential depression. Something that can happen to a minority of the population. The limited research says this most often happens to those of high intelligence, gifted. I don't see that as me by any means, although I was 2nd in my hs class, sister was number 1 in her college class, come from a long line of drs with a couple showing some real brilliance.

    Many will say that, yes, we all die, but if they were to fully grasp what death and nothingness is, fully grasp/there is no abstraction of our death, our nothingness, most would indeed be depressed or go running screaming into the night. That's why some great thinkers have theorized this is why we have the various religions with a god and after-life...we, generally speaking, can't handle the thought of this being it and that you, me, everyone else are just literally one of billions who will return to dust and be just this wink in the history of humanity. A wink. Like most people, I see my children, friends, etc. more than a mere wink.

    I have tried to get my faith back (complete and total belief in the existence of "God" and an after-life of eternity) by going to church more often. This really doesn't help because once one has fully grasped the possibility that this may be it for the children, parents, friends, animals we intensely love, for humanity in general, there is no going back to the blinded faith one once had. No going back.

    There are some who know what I'm talking about. A rare few. One is a noted physician who even has a website devoted to this true "existential depression". We emailed some, and when I asked how he handles the mortality of humanity with no after-life, he said "Denial. Denial not by having a religious belief but by living life so intensely." Even he, like most every human, can't handle the possibility of, like Ann Margret said, never ever seeing loved ones again.

    Denial of any kind isn't working for me.

  • Well, reality is about subjective perspective I suppose. The tone to this is fairly aggressive, but you have the right to think what you will about this existence, or anything afterwards.

    I don't think pills are the answer, but to some they are a helping hand.

    It sounds to me that the lens you choose to see the world through is clouded and dark. Sure, we all die. But, you're wasting you're chance to live if you're only focusing on the end. Which is an even more ludicrous notion if you couple that thought with the notion that this is the only chance one gets.

    The mind is a powerful thing, and of it, we can make a heaven or a hell. Life's all about perspective. I would caution against advising others to only see the end and bend to your bleak opinions. Happiness is best experienced with the present moment. Focusing only to the future (especially a dead and rotting one) may bring some negative thought patterns.

    This is a support board. So come here for help and to help others. Recruiting others to negativity defeats that purpose. And, in my opinion, you're not too fond of you're negative thought patterns. If you were, you wouldn't be here.

  • I appreciate you taking the time to comment.

    I never said I am focusing only on the end. I'm simply looking at the end, an end man has appeared to run from since the beginning of time (from the very beginning man has had some kind of God and after-life, which may be true...but may not be true, the courage to consider the latter). We look at birth, why not the end unless the end is so horrific that the limited human animal brain can't handle it. A possibility that the coffin may be the complete end as I said many times.

    In closing, how can consideration of the end be recruiting people to negative thinking. It is, after all, what happens to us all...that is, at least our "unit" decays, eventually even bones becoming nothing but molecules in the biomass. That is reality, and I believe we would all be much healthier if we were to face this truth. Some say that the root of all anxiety is knowing that we will one day, and rather soon, die. If we were to face this reality with courage, if we were to face this reality with group support, then the panic attacks, GAD might fall by the wayside.

    Courage sez the cowardly lion to face the end, just as we face birth, and not see it as this morbid thing but as reality. To call it morbid tells me that, yes, people are in true heavy denial.

    It's about growing up, really growing up to be able to look at all aspects of life bravely.

  • I did not know about the wrist thing thanks i will have a go at that Maribee

  • Annabettina, We have no control over death, so why waste our energy on it.

    There is a book called "The Dash" which I read during my most down days with Anxiety. On our tombstone will be 2 dates. The day we were born and the day we die. HOWEVER, it's that dash between the dates that is most important. It is what we did with our lives. Refreshing to read and contemplate.

  • Whatever I'm going through, the dash isn't enough for me. I am trying so hard to accept the possibility that there may be nothing else but the dash. And, again, it's this possibility, that there is No continuation of "life" beyond the grave that I'm having trouble with. So the "dash" isn't, right now, enough for me.

    In looking, though, at my dash, I see a person who even as a teenager was holding babies with heads a big as pumpkins in my arms (was a volunteer at an institution for the profoundly retarded), majored in psychology and social worker and worked with people who needed a lot of help, gave money to help wipe out poverty--those African children with stomachs distended from hunger...and btw we with full bellies aren't special, we have the same value as those children, just luckier I guess, a roll of the dice in our favor).

    My dash? Right now, when I consider the billions, Billions, of years old the universe is that dash seems rather insignificant, and I guess I want all of humanity to have enough significance to be more than one day simply being nothing, nothing, but molecules in the biomass. Perhaps I should focus on the significance of being those molecules? Perhaps I guess I need to find a way to be happy and content with one day being nothing but molecules that will one day form the flowers which paint the earth or the stars which shine in the night sky? Considering that this is a possibility, I should try.

  • Dear Anna..you have seen awful things that have left an impression on your mind...it shows that you care and is to your credit that you do. You care about humanity and what becomES of everybody too. But yesterday has gone darling and left bad memories it's hard to forget. Tomorrow may never come but if it does you will face it as you have faced other awful stuff.

    We only have today.

    Now.

    I wish I could say something wise to take away your doubts and fears and at 76 I guess I should be able to....but I cant.

    Is there something you really love to do ? Drama ? Writing ? Walking ? Something you can really focus on ...........

  • Maribee...

    In reply to your last question, nothing takes away the angst I feel concerning the possibility which I've mentioned ad nauseam. I do get some relief, I guess, when...

    The only time I get some relief is when I force myself to focus only on

    "God". No looking at the possibility, forcing myself to remember what my innards kept "saying" to me years ago when someone in my family was involved in a life or death situation.

    My innards "said" when I would pray with everything I had in me..."Don't look to the left of you, don't look to right of you, don't look at what happens to others in this same situation. Don't. This is between you and me so don't judge this situation's outcome by what others have experienced in similar circumstances. Keep your eyes focused solely and completely on Me."

    I also make an effort to remind myself of those times when it definitely seemed like Something larger was involved in my life. Me, who was known as the secular nun, called this Something God whom I loved hugely.

    I retract some of my previous post to you...

    Going to church does help in those moments I am there staring at the crucifix at the altar and begging for help.

    It's odd in that I was a person of tremendous faith and then literally one day I saw life very differently. As I said, so wish I could go back to how I once was, life was much easier then.

    Thank you, Maribee.

  • YOU CAN GO BACK TO BELEIVING......you need to understand WHAT IT IS that is preventing you from doing this.....sometimes, like when you see the horrors on the Syria situation, the poor little kids, the old, struggling, being carried, to escape mans inhumanity to man, loved ones suffering u describable suffering and pain, it makes you doubt your religion....I've doubted many many times..,having almost list my own life and gave continuing seemingly u surmountable health problems to contend with.......but....I JUST KNOW that there is something beyond what we can see, I get strength from my-maybe fictional- God....I can't prove he excuses....BUT DOES IT MATTER ??

    If you get strength and comfort from BELEIVING he will help you through....JUST DO IT.....GIVE YOURSELF ANOTHER CHANCE......I don't know you but I care about you...I wish I could make a difference to your life and emotional pain.

    My narcicist tic husband has turned all three of my adult kids against me by telling them dreadful lies about me..he is not even their father...but one has now found him out in just one of the lies so I am hopeful...he is co trolling them now as he can no longer control me..I am divorcing him after 40 years of abuse...at my age 76 this is not an easy thing to do as I am also disabled....I am grieving for the loss of my 3 children, just as you are grieving for the loss of your belief.

    WE CAN HEAL.....BUT WE HAVE TO DO THIS OURSELVES.....

    Hope I make some sense darling.........we seem to be struggling together don't we.

  • Maribee, the life and death situation I referred to in a previous post did not deal with me having some kind of potentially terminal health problem. I was referring to the situation involving the mother I so greatly loved. She was married almost 50 years to an abusive narcissist and finally she found the courage to divorce this O. J.

    There is a long story to what happened and a rather unbelievable story but suffice it to say, my father died before the divorce was granted. My mother became his widow and was given a federal survivor annuity, the house, his life ins. After almost 50 years of marriage and six children, my mother deserved it.

    Long story but again suffice it to say, I knew in my spirit that the filing of the divorce was "God" simply wanting her to show courage, to take a stand and say "no more", to depend solely on "God", on all that is Good and Golden in this world.

    Perhaps you needed to hear this.

    All for now...

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