Question: Who decides it is time for you to die? Do we have input to this? Do we control our passing?
I don’t know the answer to those questions. I’m not sure anyone has those answers although there are a lot of people and religions with strong opinions.
Here is what I think (notice I said think, not know). My thoughts and ideas come from what I have observed during the 30 some years of working with people and end of life issues along with the reading and studying that occurred in my search for meaning in life.
Who decides it is time for you to die? I preface my answer to this question with the belief that our physical bodies are not who we are. Our physical body is simply a vehicle we use to get around in on this planet. There is a driver to this vehicle. The Driver is more than our personality. It is spirit, soul, superego, life force whatever we want to call that part of ourselves that goes beyond the day to day.
Another analogy would be an iceberg. The part that extends above the water is who we think we are. The part below the water contains all that we are. I am calling that part the Driver.
Now to address the question of who decides it is time for us to die. I think (not know) the Driver does. The Driver knows when our work is done, our lessons learned. This planet is like a school for lessons to be learned. Who is to say that what we came here to learn wasn’t learned in 3 days, or 30 years or 100 years.
Do we have input to this? (Do we have conscious input into the time that we die?) I’m going to take the issue of suicide out of this question because of course we all have that option. On a deeper level we have limited control over the time that we die from disease or old age. In the hours to days before death we can wait for someone to arrive, we can wait until someone leaves--very limited control but control never the less. I’ve also seen people get to death’s door and come back to live longer. It was like they got to the edge and said “Wait, I have something that really needs to be done”. Some people who have had Near Death Experiences are also examples of stating “I’m not ready yet”.
Do we control our passing? There are just two ways to die--fast or gradual.
Fast death is what we would call unexpected. A person is alive one minute and dead the next from heart attack, car crash, violence. Yes, I think the Driver knows that is going to happen and sometimes, rare as it may be, that knowledge leaks into the personality as what we call a premonition.
With gradual death we have a lot more control. We make choices and then live and die the consequences of those choices. Actually, that statement applies to all of life.
I know I am walking a thin line by sharing this as a blog so again I will just say I am giving you something to think about. I don’t know any of this, I just think it might be.