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Bodhipaksa

Mar 20, 2009

Richard Wagner: “We must learn to die, and to die in the fullest sense of the word. The fear of the end is the source of all lovelessness…”

Richard WagnerWagner’s advice, that we need to learn to die, may bring up thoughts of our mortality: thoughts we may not be comfortable dwelling upon. But Bodhipaksa suggests learning to die really means learning to live fully, embracing the ungraspable flow of life.

In Wagner’s epic Ring cycle, Siegfried is the hero precisely because he lives by a code: never to let your life be shaped by fear of its end.

Religion is often supposed to free us from fear of death, and yet that doesn’t always happen. A recent study of patients with terminal cancer revealed that those who regularly prayed were more than three times more likely to insist on receiving intensive …