Death’s Value

Jacob - Martinez, Georgia
Entered on March 12, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: death
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I believe that death is completely over rated. People always act as if death is some horrible catastrophe that is worse than anything else they could experience. I disagree; the only value that I manage to find in death is completely lent to life. Without death, life would be pretty much meaningless. Different types of deaths are obviously worse and more painful than others, but when you get right down to it, everyone that has ever lived has to die.

It is not that I am being disrespectful to those who have lost loved ones over the years, I know I have. It hurts the people left behind, the countless numbers of people you knew and loved over the years, but they are the ones who feel everything. They experience the pain, the grief, the suffering, it is them who have to move on. Once you die, its over. Its just you, and you are done. I am not sure what kind of afterlife there may or may not be, that is not in my argument at all. I am saying that, considering everything you went through in your life, all the choices and mistakes you made, death can not be all that bad.

Another way to prove the “death is horrible” assumption wrong is to leave it to your common sense. Nobody considers themselves the absolute worst person on the planet. We all know somebody weaker, less intelligent, worse off, etc., (even if you try to force yourself not to judge other people because of morals, people tend to do so naturally.) and it is common knowledge that everyone has to die, so how could it be that bad? You see, all of these people grouped in your mind as “lesser,” ,“inferior,” or whatever also have to die. There is no way that death can be an extraordinarily awful experience because even the lowest and the weakest have to go through exactly what you do.

While being the one dying and the observer are completely different roles, I feel like the observer is actually the ones that goes through more of the pain and the wishing that their loved one could live just a little bit longer. Life is hard, it is meant to be. People that struggle their entire lives for a small fortune may die in total bankruptcy and unemployment. The person who actually dies is, in my mind, being released from this madness and sent somewhere new. They are freed from the chaos unfolding on Earth and realize how petty all of their old dreams and fears had been.

As I once read in a poem by John Donne, “death is a slave to fate, chance, kings, and desperate men.”(Holy Sonnet 10, line 9) When I read this poem I had already decided on the idea that death could not be any huge burden or pain. I had already accepted that everybody has to do it and that it could not possibly be horrendous in the slightest sense of the word. This poem, Holy Sonnet 10, confirmed all of my beliefs and allowed me to become more honest and sharing of them afterwards. The only real value that death deserves is giving life complete value. Death causes life to become precious.