Our bodies are not homes to our souls, just a mere tool.
Some weeks ago, my brother lost his friend and it was very difficult for me, or for anyone, not to feel the void that someone I never knew left in this world, and in the lives of so many people as he left for an unknown phase.
Yesterday, my friends lost a friend of theirs. She was a beautiful lady and had written her final papers in the university, in fact, her graduation was in just 2 weeks. I never knew her but after she died, I saw several pictures of her and several stories about her short duration among the living. Of course, I felt sad.
Before the day ended, I got news too that another one of my friends was in the hospital with her dad. He was not breathing. I was confused, but I decided to join in prayers for his soul to return to him, to return home. But I knew I had made a mistake in the prayer when less than 30 minutes later, he was signed off as dead.
I was sad for a long time, and I cried genuine tears. I was worried about the life I had lived, about where I was but most importantly, about the future.
If only there was someone who could tell us when we would die. Or if there was a sign, maybe the movement of the cloud in a particular way or a very tiny whisper while we’re making plans for the future. Or maybe a colour that could be ascribed to death. And at once, the colour red came to my mind. Normally, is that not the colour for danger? The colour of blood. And where there was blood, there was pain and possible death too, right? So I decided that I’ll be wary when I see the smallest red sign flashing in front of me. Then I remembered there was no blue coloured heart. No yellow coloured heart, no green coloured heart, I mean, apart from on our emoji keyboard. Red stood for love, too. Who are we without love? I thought about blue, but blue is cool. Green signifies progress, white signified purity or surrender. And all the colours I thought about held a positive twist that I didn’t think death possessed.
Death is roaming the streets and we have no way to identify it. We receive notifications on every application we install but not one from the only one who can detach us from accessing these apps. Day by day, you can feel death growing stronger as though the souls it takes makes it stronger. You can feel it’s powers growing as it doesn’t hesitate to take away the ones you love without replacing them, irrespective of any factor.
Death is roaming the streets. More proudly, less timid, not caring if it’s the traffic lights that went off and urged people to cross. Death wears a garment in the colour of water. Transparent, so you may only see through. So you may see people, things, activities that are not meant to be in your concern. Death knocks three times before it enters your home, your life. But we never answer, we never hear it. It throws down its gauntlet knowing there would be no one to pick it and performs its deed. And when we hear of its visit to the homes of our loved ones, we lament. We mourn. We reflect on our lives and promise to be better.
But just as soon as we resolve, so does it pass by again. Wiping its garment over our tears and taking along with it, our resolve to be better. Or rather than our very feeble and easily-swayed heart, who else but the invisible death that can’t defend itself can we place the guilt and blame of our forgotten promises on? For it eludes me how we forget about the dead so soon, and our promises to them. How people go back to the way of their lives even when they know how sudden death can strike, releasing you of the dreams and the perfect future you wake up every morning to work towards.
But constantly thinking about life has made me realise how much of an empty vase it is. What is a vase without flowers? What is life without God? Our bodies are not homes to these souls but a mere passage. But when we get home, to God, what would we say of the way we used the bodies we lived in while we were on earth? How would this body which is just a mere tool reveal all the things it did while it was alive? Would it be proud or ashamed to do so?
I just want you to remember, my friend, that the saying that life is short is not as much of a cliche as much as it is a necessary reminder that the length of our lives is not based on how long our dreams would take. Just because it’s not happening to you doesn’t mean it’s not happening at all, and just because you have perfect plans for the future doesn’t mean it would exempt you either. And I want you to remember that you’re accountable for everything you do while you’re alive. Don’t misuse your only chance while chanting YOLO, you only live once as though it’s your mantra and certificate to an even better life beyond. The only thing that is real is death, not life. So live well, so you can die in a similar manner.