Dark Matters

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Equip yourself against the trappings

of the ego and align with the way.

Dark

Matters

facing and accepting the universal law of the impermanence of all things; alignment with and acceptance of the immutable laws of nature

“I’m Still Around” - Jörn Kux
https://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/jorn-kux/id598295999shapeimage_17_link_0

After Life (The Thinking Atheist)

Can you have a meaningful life without an afterlife? Seth Andrews asked several friends to join him in exploring the merits of human existence and the concepts of posthumous reward and punishment. It is my hope that this video will answer religious claims that a secular life is meaningless and void and remind us all to cherish our precious and temporary tenure on planet earth.

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life.”


~Steve Jobs

Stephen Cave is a writer and philosopher who is obsessed with our obsession with immortality. He's the author of Immortality: The Quest to Live Forever and How It Drives Civilization, an inquiry into humanity's irrational resistance to the inevitability of death.

Cave moves across time, religion and history's major civilizations to explore just what drives this instinct.

VIDEOhttp://www.npr.org/2014/05/23/312544032/should-we-be-afraid-of-death

What happens to your body after you die?

Whatever your beliefs, most people would agree that the body left behind when we depart this mortal coil is just a heap of bones and flesh. But what happens to those leftovers? Assuming that nature is left to its own devices, our bodies undergo a fairly standard process of decomposition that can take anywhere from two weeks to two years.

It should be obvious, but death has more than one definition

Determining death will likely always be controversial. But I believe that with trust, respect, and openness as the basis of decision-making conversations, families and clinicians can work together to make respectful and reasonable choices.

What if we understand death as a developmental stage — like adolescence or mid-life? Dr. Ira Byock is a leading figure in palliative care and hospice in the United States. He says we lose sight of "the remarkable value" of the time of life we call dying if we forget that it's always a personal and human event, and not just a medical one. From his place on this medical frontier, he shares how we can understand dying as a time of learning, repair, and completion of our lives.

Katie Roiphe's preoccupation with death goes back to her childhood, when she contracted virulent pneumonia at the age of 12. She was sick for a year and thought she was going to die.

Her terror of death was reignited many years later when her father died. It was then that Riophe found herself turning to great minds to see how they confronted mortality.

The Violet Hour

Great Writers at the End

by Katie Roiphe

Humans are like a virus

This scene from ‘The Matrix’, while not completely accurate in describing humanity’s relationship with the planet that sustains it (as is discussed and dissected on this Quora page ) does in fact characterize humans’ tendency and unique capacity to adversely affect the balance of the earth’s ecology. Perhaps Nietzsche's take on the matter is more appropriate, even if not as dramatic.

- Nietzsche

Perhaps the focus should be longer spans of good health

“When they die, it’s like an extended member of our family dies.”

Prince’s untimely death Thursday at the age of 57 left fans shocked and in mourning. While many express their grief, others are surprised to experience a strong personal reaction: I didn’t know him, some have thought, so why am I this upset?

(June 7, 1958 – April 21, 2016)

What if we didn’t have to grow old and die? The average American can expect to live for 78.8 years, an improvement over the days before clean water and vaccines, when life expectancy was closer to 50, but still not long enough for most of us. So researchers around the world have been working on arresting the process of aging through biotechnology and finding cures to diseases like Alzheimer’s and cancer. What are the ethical and social consequences of radically increasing lifespans? Should we accept a “natural” end, or should we find a cure to aging?

Meredith Melnick

PLAY

Adam explains why it's absolutely necessary that you accept the inevitable.

In Adam Ruins Everything, host Adam Conover employs a combination of comedy, history and science to dispel widespread misconceptions about everything we take for granted. A blend of entertainment and enlightenment.

Death is an unsettling thing to come to grips with. We know it is inevitable that it will one day happen to us. One of the first things most of us learn about death is that it happens to everyone, yet perhaps because no one ever comes back to tell the tale, there’s a lot about our impending doom that’s difficult to fully grasp. To help us take comfort in our inexorable demise, we welcome Andrew Stark, an author and political science professor at the University of Toronto.

You're going to die one day. You belong to the only species that is consciously aware of this simple, universally true fact. And just being reminded that you will someday die can manipulate your behavior now — in ways that seemingly have little to do with death.


"In order to function with psychological equanimity in the world, we humans have to believe there's something more, that we're not just these creatures that are fated to obliteration upon death," said Jeff Greenberg, a psychologist at the University of Arizona.

Author: Stephanie Pappas

Trauma: The Mechanics of Loss

“Trauma is our special legacy as sentient beings, creatures burdened with the knowledge of our own impermanence.” -David Morris (embedded journalist)

How should we deal with the tragic side of life--and how philosophers  have responded to the tragic fragility of life and happiness, especially in modern times.

The Tragedy of Life:

Philosopher Stephen Cave calls the urge to keep the soul and body perpetually alive a universal obsession, the driving force behind our greatest scientific advancements, and world religions.

Outrunning The Reaper

Why we mourn the death of someone in our tribe, but find it hard to muster the same feelings for thousands of suffering people halfway across the world?  Why our brains are wired to care most about the people in our own "tribe"--our home, our town, our country --some tricks for how to expand our circle of who counts as a fellow tribe member.

Death: Us vs. Them - Moral Reason

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Mindfulness is helpful during the grieving process because it allows us to acknowledge the universality of loss. It helps us to accept the inevitability of loss as a part of life. At one point or another, we will all face the loss of everything we hold dear.

PODCAST

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