THE DEAD ARE OUR NEAREST NEIGHBOURS
The dead are not far away, they are very, very near us. Each one of us some day will have to face our own appointment with death. I like to think of this as an encounter with your deepest nature and most hidden self. It is a journey towards a new horizon.
As a child when I looked up at the mountain, I used to dream of the day that I would be old enough to go with my uncle to the summit. I thought that I would be able to see the whole world from the horizon. I remember that I was very excited when the day finally came. My uncle was bringing sheep over the mountain, and he told me that I could come with him. As we climbed up the mountain and came to where I thought the horizon would be, it had disappeared. Not only was I not able to see everything when I got there, but another horizon was waiting, further on. I was disappointed, but also excited in an unfamiliar way. Each new level revealed a new world. Hans-Georg Gadamer, a wonderful German philosopher, has a lovely concept of the horizon as something towards we journey, but also something that journeys along with us. This is an illuminating metaphor for understanding the different horizons of your own growth. If you are striving to be equal to your destiny and worthy of the possibilities that sleep in the clay of your heart, then you should be regularly reaching new horizons. Against this perspective, death can be understood as the final horizon. Beyond there, the deepest well of your identity awaits you. In that well, you will behold the beauty and light of your eternal face.