Saturday, February 07, 2009

Post 532 : The (forgotten) art of dying (and letting die)

I have been surrounded by death in the past few days. Someone close and dear is passing away. It ist emotional draining, but it is not very bad.

He is in coma, is dying a fairly (physically) peaceful death.

My only crib...
I am strong believer in the Tibetan mode of dying....Unfettered, peaceful and I really believe that the crying, sobbing and dramatics just makes the process of dying so much more difficult for the person in question. I would rather leave him alone, get someone to pray with him (rather than for him....), especially prayers he believed in. (Wonder what I wish for an atheist like myself....).

Yet the modern hospital is a complete violation of this dogma (I know the word has only negative connotations in recent usage, but I still think that is the right word).

Tubes, pipes, ventilators,catherdrals, measuring probes, iv fluids....and what not. The person who is dying in my opinion (and thats fashioned on the Tibetan thoughts) is as good as being tortured in this case.

In my sincere opinion, if we know someone is dying the first thing we should do is move him/her into natural surroundings, allow him to be natural, and maybe help him ease into the process of dying. I think more than the observors, the actor himself is at the heart of the trauma, he needs most help.

Prayers, peaceful hymns, his favorite song, his favorite photo album, his favorite daughter, his favorite food (if he can consume it)....Let him remember the joy of living in his last moments. Shower him with hugs, laugh with him, kiss him and be kissed.

And contrast this with the weeping, the sad long drawn faces I have seen next to him in the past few days.

The dying will die whether we help them or not.....we dont control the physical aspect.
Helping them, makes this grand finale more human and acceptable to both the living and the dying. Every death is that of a truth, of an entity who could be touched, felt and enjoyed. Lets remember him for that, rather than the 5 errors of his live.

Le roi est mort, vive le roi !!

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