08 May Birthing and Deathing
Natural life is always a useful influence, whether it be human or animal. We have been taking care of chicken eggs, awaiting their hatching. This occurred yesterday. We started with 7 eggs. Two didn’t hatch and one chick died overnight. We are left with 4 chicks cheeping away and slowly fluffing up.
Yesterday my wife posted to facebook that there is nothing cooler than birth/new life. I agree. And yet, this, in many ways, is a reality on the backdrop of death. The priceless miracle of life for these baby chicks is evident in the frailty of the one that died. We see and appreciate new life because of how easy it can be taken away. How complex it is to live. The reality of birth and new life fell upon us yesterday, creating a buzz of excitement in our house. But so did death. Death fell upon us just as quickly in the eggs that did not hatch as well as the short life of one. Where birth is fresh, so is death.
In discussion of lasting life changing experiences, a friend on facebook, Jason Dias, said this: “Others of us, well, the changes are shorter in term and then we grow lazy or complacent. We need another dose of death to keep us moving.” I feel as though the past couple years have been a sort of dying process for myself. Not one of extreme depression or anything, but operating in such a way that has lead to “another dose of death.” I’m in the middle of a re-birthing process that is not unlike some I have gone through before. I need to re-learn things many times. I need to keep experiencing doses of death in order to learn how to live. My self-in-process must die in order to live.
We are always birthing and deathing. We cannot truly appreciate the value of life without the value of death. Death is not just a physical demise, but is more often a description of the growing away from ourselves, our relationships, and our meaning. Decay will always slowly set in to remind us. Decay of passion; decay of love; decay of meaning; decay of awe and wonder; decay of real self-worth. Moving into old age for many can often just be an indication of the longer lasting decay in one’s life. More time has gone by for that person. It is not just that they are dying physically — they have been slowly dying metaphorically, metaphysically, mentally, emotionally, and personally.
I obviously have to be reminded often in my life to return to life inside of me. I am often like a lost child that had no idea he wondered off into the land of decay. It is in my decay moments, if I pay attention, that I am redirected back toward my self and a sense of living my life in awe and wonder and passion and love as me right now.