Great Loss and the Cosmic Joke: Robert Strock and Dr. Ken Druck
inquiry & integration
Regardless of specific faith or lack of it, let yourself vulnerably question whether you absolutely “know” what will happen to you after death?
This practice can be done alone or with a friend, lover, or counselor. Take one to five minutes or longer to contemplate and answer the question. When done with another, it is essential that the listener remains neutral and encourages you to look deeply at your beliefs about whether there is an afterlife and access a part of you that doesn’t “know”. Notice as vulnerably as possible how this affects you emotionally or what state this puts you in. (i.e. helplessness, silence, mystery, awe, fear, courage, trust, anxiety). If you are with a partner repeat this inquiry as needed to help your partner focus.
Will you allow yourself to realize as deeply as possible that life is impermanent, at least as we know it in our bodies, and that you can see the limitations of blindly following someone else’s rules. As lightly as possible, can you envision from a new perspective, making your own guidelines for life by taking ownership of yourday, hour, and each moment? In what ways would you change your life, large or small, if you pierced the denial of death more deeply.
Let yourself feel the loss of whomever you have most cared for that has died. Notice if there were even flash point moments where you entered the mystery of wondering what really happens. You may have asked “where are they? Using this as a catalyst, take 5 minutes or as long as feels natural and think and talk about the questions above. If you are with a partner ask them to repeat the questions above to keep you focused. Let yourself go as deeply into the moment of perhaps liberating your prior beliefs to also be in touch with a “not knowing”, with as much lightness and vulnerability as possible.
Do you get the joke of denying your own death, and the possibility of liberating yourself to a more awakened life with new awareness?
Take some time to realize how rare it is to really let in the impermanence of life as you know it. Let it be an unpredictable time for thinking, reflecting and talking about the amazing realization of that mystery. Let yourself realize this in silence and in words as is natural for you.