“Bind me like a seal upon thine heart:
love is as strong as death.”
– Song of Solomon 8:6
A balloon, filled with air, floats in an infinite sea of air.
The balloon says to itself, “I am a balloon, living in a world full of other balloons. I am separate from all the other balloons. I live in a limited, bounded world of ‘me and mine’ – my achievements, my successes, my failures, my thoughts, my feelings, my beliefs, my knowledge, my past, my future, my seeking, my longings, my joys, my fears. I am a little piece of the whole, a little piece of everything. This is ‘my life’, somehow divided from life itself.”
What the balloon fears most is its own popping, which it calls ‘my death’. It sees death as the ultimate loss – the loss of ‘me and mine’, the loss of ‘my world’, the end of ‘my life’, the loss of ‘my little piece of everything’. From the perspective of ‘me’, death seems to be ‘the end of me’.
But upon death, upon the ‘popping’, what really happens? ‘My little piece of everything’ simply explodes back into everything. ‘My air’ simply dissolves back into infinite air. ‘My life’ simply dissolves back into life itself.
But even that isn’t true, is it? For how can air dissolve ‘back’ into air? ‘My air’ was never separate from infinite air in the first place. There was ONLY air – the boundary was the dream. From the perspective of the air, from the perspective of consciousness itself, upon what we call ‘death’, nothing really happens at all. Imagined boundaries fall away, that’s all. That which is contracted, releases itself. Some have called this ‘love’.
In truth, there cannot be ‘loss of life’. Upon death, nothing is truly lost – except the balloon’s imagination of itself, its dream of separateness, its conceptual stories about living and dying. Death is not a time-bound event that happens to “you” – it is the dissolution of the imagination of the “you” who would experience that at all.
The imagined experiencer cannot experience death, for death is the falling-away of that very imagination.
In simpler language, there is nothing to fear – not even ‘nothing’.
Death is seen to be equal to life – an old, familiar, intimate friend who cannot touch the truth of yourself. Death is only the deep rest of yourself, and in this realisation lies a deep peace that passes all understanding.