Questioning Life And Death

I ponder the questions to which I have no answers. So, I do the only thing that helps me when I’m hurting with no answers. I walk. Dirt Man grabbed our packs and loaded them and leashed the dog, We headed for the woods. I needed to stomp the earth and inquire the universe. I needed to fill my pores with the beauty of nature and hopefully find a bit of wisdom along my way. I felt angry. I felt helpless. I felt hopeless. And damn it, I wanted answers!

Why do people get sick?

Why must life be followed by death?

Why is life so short?

Why must there be pain in living and dying?

What is the purpose?

How can the heart let go?

I grapple to find reason in the midst of chaos. I grasp for answers in a sea of uncertainty.

There are times that we are but shadows that reach out and spread across one another’s paths. We don’t always know why our lives intersect. We don’t always know the impact someone has had on us until much later, and often we never know quite how we’ve touched someone else.

We might never know our true purpose. We are never ready to be used up and hollowed out. No one wants our time to be over. And there never ever seems to be enough time.  Just maybe using all we have is the purpose after all.

There are times that we lean and sway. In those times of instability, it helps to have connections that lean and sway right along with us. It comes with love and support.

When the body is too weak to hold itself up, it’s important for there to be another to slide beneath and be strong enough to hold them both. Life is meant to be shared through the good and the bad. Relationship gives meaning to every thing we say, do, or even think.

Who are we to know when our time has come full circle? And who are we to complain of the size of our circle? It is the depth of what is packed in the circle that matters. It is the accumulation of all we’ve touched, those we’ve taught, and the lessons we’ve learned that completes the process of which we have no control. Though I have no understanding of why some circles are completed before others, I know I must accept it and be thankful that I was a part of that circle.

Still, I have no answers. Other than knowing it is the process of life and death, I fail at any deeper understanding. I remain helpless. I might never understand the purpose. I hold out hope to what is greater than I am. I hope that even through our losses we will all love as long as we live.

25 thoughts on “Questioning Life And Death

  1. Beautiful photos.

    The answers to these questions lie not in the mind with reasoning. The answers lie in the heart with feeling. Go within where resides the coming and going of the breath, the sustainer of life and the feeling of the heart. If you stay there long and often enough, the questions will cease and you will be filled only with answers. Ponder not these difficult questions of the mind, but only the power behind the breath every moment of every day. In this lies the answer to your quest for fulfillment.
    . . ./J

  2. I know. There’s no way to get to the end of it except by getting to the end of it. My husband has a good friend and fellow baseball coach who just found out he has stage four brain cancer. I’m impressed with how my husband is just doing what he can — spending time with him. But his kids are the same age as mine, and I can’t make peace with it. It’s unfair and wrong and it sucks. And I’ve been so sick for the last month I can barely keep myself and my kids and the house at the bare minimum for being fed and clothed and functioning. I could really, really use a walk in the woods.

  3. I actually have some answers to you questions… much of it comes from my faith but the truth of these answers have rung so true in my spirit that I cannot see otherwise….

    Why do people get sick? There are many reasons why people get sick… many reasons today are diet (as so many of the foods ok’d for our consumption in the USA are illegal in other countries.. its very scary) but we all have our time to pass on. And sometimes, although it hurts to lose someone… it ends up being for the best in some way, for someone…. even if its through a hard lesson that needs learning. I have a good friend who lost his mother and now has to help raise his little brother & sister… and 4 years later, he’s realizing why she has to go for the purposes in his life and the lessons that he needed to learn… and probably wouldn’t have learned any other way.

    Why must life be followed by death? Death is only another beginning. As the caterpillar turns into a butterfly.. we to shed our skin and become something new. We shed our flesh and our true self, our spirit remains…. alive in the heavenly dimension.

    Why is life so short? Life is meant to be short… its a place for us to learn and grow spiritually.. .like a spirit training ground.. preparing us for the next level in life (the life after death) There is much more to do and see and learn there.

    Why must there be pain in living and dying? The pains help us grow… we learn from them and learn to trust God through them. When we learn to let go and trust God… the pains do lessen. But of course we’re going to feel pain with a loss… even if we know it to be temporary separation. We miss them… we miss that direct spiritual connection. And it takes time…

    What is the purpose? As I touched on before.. we’re here to learn, grow and experience an earthly body. We were spirits first… and came to earth knowing all things… but our minded needed to be shielded from the knowledge… so we could learn on a new level. And when we return to our spiritual home, we’re on another level yet. We’re constantly learning and growing & expanding our spirit… as we connect it with the Holy Spirit.

    How can the heart let go? The only way that has worked for me is trusting in God’s plan… trusting that all things work together for good. And knowing that we will see our loved ones again.

  4. Not many people can cope with the thought of their own death…with the idea of a permanent unconsciousness…where there is simply nothing. It seems so different from the nothing that preceeded life, doesnt it? (from the book “How We Die,” which I am reading right now – it’s a pretty interesting read).

  5. You asked many questions and gave good answers. Death is the hardest factor in life for me to deal with. I have not unraveled the mysteries of life and likely never will on this side of Heaven. My heart shatters when I lose someone in death. My mother died when I was 27 and she was 46. I lost a husband to cancer, and lost grandparents that were close to me. Yet, I believe with all my heart that God is good. Always good. I believe He created the universe and holds it in His hand. If he can do this, He can provide for me. I exist in His love. Take heart, Suzi. Our best days are yet to be. Blessings to you…

  6. My favorite hymn is called Farther Along. “Farther along we’ll know all about it. Farther along we’ll understand why. Cheer up, my brother, live in the sunshine. We’ll understand it all by and by.” Sometimes in this life, we’ll never know the answers to our deepest questions. Only God knows the reason, and all we can do is trust that it is for a higher purpose. We all go through those feelings and doubts. Hang in there. Great post with great pictures!

  7. I am sorry for your loss. I hope you can take comfort in the fact that you are not alone in your suffering and struggles with these tough questions.
    Like you, I head out into nature … it does not make the pain go away, but it does heal me and give me strength some how. Not sure what it is .. the peacefulness, the vastness, or the solid constancy of everything around me.

    I am really bad at dealing with temporary goodbyes let alone the permanent kind. A while back, I had a friend try to get me to focus on the gifts the person I lost gave me while we were together and not on the loss. I tried, because it is a really nice way to think about it, however, there are still days when I feel great sadness and even anger.
    Sickness and death are the most painful things we have to deal with in this life … and I don’t think there is an easy answer to any of it. We all need to search inside to find our answers … you are one of the wisest bloggers I know, you are going to come out of this even wiser.

    I pray you find strength in the people around you and peace in your heart.

  8. The photos are stunning. I think I have stopped pondering the “whys”. I’m not religious and I can honestly say I don’t know what comes next if anything. Still, it comforts me to believe it’s all for a purpose. When you see your children and your grandchildren, you just know the circle is continuing. And for me, that’s enough.

  9. This past year I’ve had a lot of close friends I know lose loved ones. In fact, some one I work with just lost her aunt this past week. Therefore, I too have pondered these exact same questions, Suzi.

    So much remains a mystery, doesn’t it?

    “How can the heart let go?

    I don’t think it ever does. But, that’s a good thing because I have found that the love shared between hearts, is the thing that allows me to move forward; easing the pain of the loss. I discovered this after my father passed away. I still miss him terribly, but our love remains eternal.

    Beautiful post. Beautiful photos, Suzi.

    Thank you for sharing.

  10. We all struggle with these questions. Some more than others. I always find that we are surrounded by so many questions, but there are not clear cut answers. If we all could know our purpose, life’s ups and downs would be more palatable. Wishing you love and peace.

  11. Sometimes these questions are better not thought about.
    I dont believe that these things are in the hands of god/the gods but i do believe that they are out of our control.
    Make the best with what we have is the best anyone can do.
    I like the pictures especially the one with the trunk cut open and the age circles shown

  12. I love the picture of the two trees–it really does look like they’re leaning on each other. I wish I had answers, and I don’t have ANY, but I’m sorry that you’re burdened with such big questions. I am, too.

  13. I’m sending you a cyberspace hug. xoxo

    I’ve had some challenges recently, too. When I’ve spoken to my friends, I’ve realized that we all do. And it is SO tiring. But we shall all persevere. Eventually, the joy comes back.

  14. Thank you for sharing these intense words. It is something I believe is hardest to face. 1 Corinthians 15:26 refers to it as an enemy ~ “The last enemy [that] shall be destroyed [is] death.” However, we do have a hope as John the beloved writes in Revelation 21:4 ~ “He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” Sometimes I don’t understand it, but I prefer to believe it now than to try and figure it out later.
    As a 22 year cancer survivor, after having stared death in the face, each day I live now, I count as special.
    If I can be of any help, please let me know.
    Meanwhile, you and your family are in my prayers.

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