Design of Life
I didn’t think I would hear of death this morning before anything else – even before I had my breakfast. You mean, my neighbor who I walked with not a month ago is not on earth anymore?
A deer barked at midnight. Was it midnight already? But why was a lone deer barking? Ana Sonam said it wasn’t a healthy sound but plead of an injured animal. As she prayed, she asked another friend if they should go and look for it. The sound didn’t come from very far. It wasn’t barking. It was crying. Each time we heard it, a splinter of pain ran through our hearts. I silently sank in my sleeping bag and caught my heart in my hand and prayed that it wasn’t being chased by a predator or was got into a trap.
We were in Gasa, sleeping cramped in a tent. But this wasn’t life we were leading forever. We had only come for a holiday. But the deer’s bark? The death of my friend? It wasn’t a choice they had made out of fun. That night, I wished life were designed a little way different – like – I wished the food chain wasn’t as it is. I wished the interdependence wasn’t designed in a way of having to depend on another’s life for one’s survival. I wished we (all organisms) were interdependent only in the sense of having to seek help and help others, but not in a matter of sustaining a life. How this shredded my heart in thousand pieces. If every piece were a mirror, you really would have seen the pain of having to accept life as it is.
Yes, this neighbor I know, she was fine just a month back. When I wondered why her car never moved from where it was parked, I knew she was taken ill and was diagnosed leukemia. And now today, I hear that she passed away. What is all this truth telling me? What is it trying to tell me to do? When I talked to my mother about it, she told me that it is the youngsters who have to be aware of death because old people already are and they are always chanting mani. Yes, it is the younger lot who haven’t time to think of death. But when it silently asks for our heart, we have to give it. It doesn’t beg and it isn’t in our hand to say no. It asks and we give. This is how life is designed. Her death left me wondering and thousands of questions still linger in my mind. I haven’t any answer. It had me shocked but I know I will have no time to seek answers when death takes me. So I have only now.
Life isn’t unfair, you are. Fate isn’t cruel your heart is - for you are your own creator of happiness and sadness. (14th November, 2007, Wednesday)