Ramblings Of an Unsatisfied Soul: Death


I have this sudden fantasy that when I die, I want the world to stop. I want it to stop for a minute and notice. I want the roads to come to a standstill. I want the traffic signals to be shut, all regular TV programming to be interrupted by messages that announce “Bald and Whiny Jerk Dead". I want the Internet to crash. I want your phone apps to hang. I want everyone to look to the sky and say something to me. Or look down and hurl abuses at me. Remember how I was to you- kind, mean, rude, gentle, loving, harsh or any other experience. Say how I infuriated you and insulted you. Just take a moment to look at the sky and remember me. No wait don't. I don't want a moment. Mourn me for a year. Remember each day that I do not exist anymore.
Obviously that is an irrational demand. Human beings are biologically opposed to sustained feelings of guilt and sadness. I have tried and failed countless times to feel guilty or sad voluntarily for a little longer. We move on. The world tells you that's a good thing. I disagree. Infact, I disagree a lot. We are moving on at the speed of a Tweet. We are diluting everything. We do not like disruptions anymore. It all has to be taken as it is and then move on. Well, you are wrong.
Death deserves disruption. It deserves "a break from the routine". Freak out. Pray. Cry. Get angry. Do something. Act like Life ended somewhere. Someone who was breathing, speaking, eating or doing something; who had an impact in your life like the unseen 100 millionth domino . He smiled, cried, laughed and felt all that you feel. He mattered. Not to you. But maybe to someone or a group somewhere. He mattered to nature and the Universe.
"But, Devang, there are 7 billion people on the planet. We cannot mourn for all. Your argument is illogical."

 If this persistent thought has already made you dismiss my point, I suggest you close the window and do something else which you deem worthwhile. Have you ever gone inside a temple, church or mosque and not quite felt "religious" as you always do? Yet you performed all the rituals. You prayed and apologized to him. It was meaningless at that moment and you still did what you were supposed to.You did it for a being whom you have never seen and yet,another human being, who was sent by Him, has been completely ignored by you. 


My religion calls for shaving of a male member's head if a family member dies. I have resolved to do it for any person who mattered to me, family or not. The idea of doing something to one's life or body to remember and remind someone about life. Adopt a ritual. Pray. Wish. Close your eyes and imagine. Get some empathy for every soul that dies. It will not drain you. And if it does, it is more worthwhile than getting drained over a slow net or a shitty phone.

My emotional rant can be traced to the sudden grief over Robin Williams's death. Millions die every year. War, disease and other reasons will define the deaths of 2014. And here I am feeling this outburst over the death of a movie star. I guess I am slow and flawed. The unexpected news of his death struck me so hard, that I am shocked at my own reaction. I had a simple thought-
"Robin Williams is dead. I don't want to see this world anymore. I just want to lie in bed all day."
I cannot define the exact reason for this feeling. Maybe I have my own personal demons which are intertwined with the death of a man I always thought of positively. His performances touched my soul. His humor would crack me up ,coupled with the fact that only I would get it while others were busy clueless, made it even more special. But most of all, I loved his acts of kindness.
When Christopher Reeve ( who will always be Superman for me) was hospitalized after his fateful accident, a Russian doctor came to visit him. The doctor told him to "Turn Over" despite knowing that Reeve was paralyzed.Reeve soon realised that it was Robin Williams and started laughing. Reeves realized- "If I could laugh, I could live."

A simple act of friendship and humor which will always play on my mind. I want to disrupt my day and life over his death. I don't want to move on like we will in a week. 
Maybe death deserves something more. Every single death deserves more than what we as beings of self-interest impart. Death deserves disruption. It will get platonic and a ritual. But life will get the respect it deserves. And that is all that should matter.

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