The Permanence of Death
Brittany Nowicki

Having read Ernest Becker’s The Denial of Death twice and giving a philosophical presentation on the topic of death, I’m at least a little educated on the ineffable absurdity of our mortal coil. Like Bosch’s painting of Death and the Miser, we clutch to the vital lie in our life which is supposed to protect us from a retributive cosmic justice. Those who love should not die suffering, those who are healthy should not die young, those who follow a faith will have a welcome death. The evidence of this is all around us but here is a particularly sad story from last year that stuck me with personally:

To waste ones life means they expended it with no purpose. However, there is no purpose to be achieved other than that which you imbue into your existence. I have decided to simply be a good man, loving husband and great friend. None of these things protect from a possible death in which I slip on some ice this winter and hit my head or I suffer a long agonizing stomach cancer. Be weary of anyone offering antidotes to these fears and what you cling to in order to assuage them. We have one of the greatest equalizers in our life through death. No one can buy their way out of it, love their way out of it, heal their way out of it or bullshit their way out of it. Embrace the explainable void, tether something into it in order to live a rich life but know too, there is a big difference in living a rich life and integrating the absurdity of death.