Saturday, November 29, 2008


What a dark, depressing day. The newspapers are full of blood, death and destruction. There is an air of sadness everywhere. The Mumbai terror strike has effectively halted the festive spirit that had begun to creep in on us. To make things worse, we’ve been having terrible weather this past week, dark cloudy sky, and light showers almost every day. The only thing I hate more than a cold winter day is a cold, rainy winter day. All plans have come to a screeching halt. I don’t think I would ever step outside this weekend, temporary hibernation for 2 days. I would drink endless cups of tea, catch up with my reading, listen to 80’s songs, order pizza and watch movies until my eyes pop out.

These days it seems like everywhere I look, I see sadness. I didn’t mean to sound so pessimistic but that’s the way it is. I called up home and was told there was a death in the community, the tenth this year. I used to think death was something that happened only to other people, to other families. But now I realized it can happen to me, to my family. My father had a mild heart attack last week and when my sister called me early in the morning I was immediately filled with fear. Fear of something that I cannot name, fear that completely took over all other emotions, fear that gripped me and made everything look bleak and dark. Looking back, I think it was the fear of losing someone dear, someone who has been there all my life; fear of being left alone, fear of having to start a new chapter. Fear of the unknown future. Fear of having no one to turn to. Fear of having to make all the decisions myself. Fear of being the grown-up.

I am scared of death. Of dying. Of not existing anymore. Of losing everything we have worked so hard for in that one moment when our hearts stop beating. Let me also admit that sometimes I’d think “what if I don’t go to heaven?” What if nobody remembers me? What if this is the end of everything?

Sometimes I’d doubt the existence of heaven. I know I sound un-Christian and non-believing but this is something I’ve thought about a lot. What if we were wrong all along? What if everything ends as soon as we die? Or what if Hindus and Buddhists were right and our lives get recycled over and over again until we attain perfection? What if my actions and deeds today influence the form I will take in my next life? What if I could only be freed from this cycle once I am sinless and pure in thought and action? What if everything in this life and the next depends on my karma? Is everything predestined, written in the stars?

Then again my Christian roots would come to my rescue. I have seen with my own eyes people who came back from the dead, listened with my ears the stories of their tour of heaven, read their description of the glory of God and of heaven, and would once again realize that yes, this is it, this is the real thing, this is what we are living for.


  1. You've touched on so many important issues in this post here, ambs. The Mumbai events, the bad weather, fear of death and the unknown, life after death. My first reaction was how we heard that in the days after 11/9, people all across the US became gentler, kinder, and much more aware of their own mortality and I think that's what I see in here. Deep deep down, I think these horrifying tragedies have a beneficial, cleansing effect on our psyche, making us re-examine our faith, beliefs, values and the way we live out our lives..

  2. You're absolutely right. This tragedy has made me, and I guess other people also, wake up to the fact that yes, we are only mortal. Death can come for us any day, anywhere. But isn't it somewhat sad that we only remember God in times of despair and forget Him when everything is alright?

  3. I can relate to a lot of what you've mentioned here - fear of death, and doubts about the after life. I fera death mostly because I love being alive so much, and it would be such a bad thing to just die and liek you said, be forgotten. How utterly morbid! And doubts, doubts and doubts. For me, my doubts are more focused on hell and what the ever burning lake of fire really means. I just can't believe that God, if he really is as loving as they say He is, would let someone burh forever - something even I, a sinner, would not wish on my worst enemies. I can't understand it.

    And too bad you didn't like last week's weather. I being a liker of warm clothing and cold air on my skin have been loving every day :)

  4. I've been thinking a lot about death and the afterlife too; I suppose it's only natural. You're absolutely right about faith coming to the rescue; although I often do have doubts & can't explain everything, at the end of the day is the assurance that there must be something after all this.

  5. "I am scared of death. Of dying. Of not existing anymore....." hetiang lampang hi zan khaw tai rek thleng2 a ngaihtuah ka ching a rilru a hah duh khawp mai!! huhamss :(

    "our lives get recycled over and over again until we attain perfection?" bengali ho hian an tih tak duh hmel!!! :-)

  6. Jerusha, the lake of fire - now that is something really scary, if there ever was one. Again, I also have my doubts here. Is there really an actual lake/valley filled with fire and the sinners are just tossed in and left to burn? (Images of the devil with his horns and his fork guarding the pit come to mind)Or is it just a metaphor to describe the punishment sinners will receive in the end? I guess we'll never know.

  7. ddb: Faith is the answer, always. But sometimes my faith gets a bit shaky and I'd have to do a lot of soul searching to make myself strong and believe again. But I guess all of us go through this bad phase now and again.

  8. siama: Ni e zanrei ah hi chuan ngaihtuah loh loh tur hi ngaihtuah a awl khawp mai. Vai ho chuan reincarnation hi an ring tak tak alawm, sawi tur pawh an ngah hi, naupang te te an previous life sawi dik thlap2 te hi, mak ve deuh chu ani sin.

  9. Death and fear are such hard realities. But Christ's resurrection (which fact has been attacked by so many critics, but not convincingly) is proof of life after death and the truth of God's word as seen in the Bible.

    Don't know whether it's a form of depression, sometimes i get so intensely homesick for my home up there. But i'm again reminded that my work here isn't yet done. I so long to finish it soon and go home.

  10. My first visit here...

    Nice write ups... Will frequent here.
    And on your Wandering posts ....
    Death is inevitable but certainly not the fear to die. Every seconds we live by in fear are the seconds that we just cut short for many beautiful things that we could have filled in for ourselves in Life we are so unaware of!

    Rome ( )

  11. mesjay: yes, death and fear are indeed hard realities that we cannot escape, sooner or later we all have to go through it.

    The resurrection is one thing which I gladly accepted, a bit surprising for doubtful me. It is just so natural, so believable, so convincing, and so reassuring. It is so comforting to know that there is hope for mankind after all.

  12. Rome : Right on! Life is beautiful and we must not spoil it by living in fear. We all are going to die anyway, so why not make the most of our lives??

    And thanks for visiting, do keep on coming back.