Arun Kumar
3 min readNov 27, 2023

--

Internalizing Mortality (2)

Arun Kumar

1. Introduction

The internalization of mortality, the recognition and acceptance of our finite existence, has the power to transform our lives in many ways.

Before internalizing mortality, life is characterized by a sense of invincibility and the pursuit of transient pleasures. However, after this existential awakening, we often experience a shift in priorities, values, and perspectives, embracing life with a newfound sense of purpose, gratitude, and wisdom.

In this following, some aspects of contrasts between life before and after the internalization of mortality are highlighted.

2. Life before the Internalization of Mortality

Before individuals internalize their mortality, they may lead lives characterized by certain common themes:

1. Invincibility and Risk-Taking: The perception of invincibility often prevails at the young age when getting old and dying is something that happens to others, leading to risk-taking behavior. The consequences may seem distant, and life becomes a daring adventure.

2. Superficial Pursuits: Pursuits may lean toward superficial, materialistic, and hedonistic goals, such as the relentless pursuit of wealth, fame, and momentary pleasures.

3. Time Mismanagement: Time is often squandered on trivial or unfulfilling activities, and individuals may procrastinate when it comes to addressing what truly matters to them.

4. Neglect of Relationships: Meaningful relationships may take a back seat, as the focus on individual pursuits overshadows the importance of nurturing connections with loved ones.

5. Fear of Aging and Mortality: Youth and vitality are prized, and aging is often feared. The concept of mortality may be pushed to the periphery of one’s consciousness.

3. Life After the Internalization of Mortality

The internalization of mortality reshapes the way we perceive and live our lives:

1. Prioritizing Meaningful Experiences: Life takes on new meaning as individuals prioritize meaningful experiences over superficial pleasures. Time becomes a precious resource, motivating the pursuit of fulfilling and enriching moments.

2. Embracing the Present: The past is accepted, and the future, no longer taken for granted, driving a renewed focus on living in the present moment. Every day is seen as an opportunity to make the most of life.

3. Search for Meaning and Purpose: The recognition of mortality inspires a quest for meaning and purpose, leading individuals to explore their passions, values, and contributions to the world.

4. Deepening Relationships: The importance of relationships becomes paramount. Time spent with loved ones is cherished, and there is a greater commitment to nurturing and building strong connections.

5. Reduced Fear and Anxiety: Internalizing mortality can lead to a reduction in fear and anxiety. With the knowledge that life is finite, individuals find greater resilience in facing life’s challenges and confronting the unknown.

6. Reflection and Self-Improvement: Self-reflection becomes a regular practice, fostering self-improvement, self-awareness, and personal growth. There is a desire to become a better version of oneself.

7. Legacy and Contribution: People seek to make a lasting impact on the world, leaving a meaningful legacy through their actions and contributions. This is motivated by a desire to be remembered for positive, lasting deeds.

8. Spirituality and Philosophy: Many individuals turn to spirituality or philosophy as a means of grappling with the concept of mortality, finding solace and guidance in different belief systems or building their own.

Conclusion

The internalization of mortality is an awakening that can dramatically alter the trajectory of one’s life.

Life before this realization is often characterized by superficial pursuits. In contrast, life after the internalization of mortality embraces the present, prioritizes meaningful experiences, and seeks to make a positive impact on the world.

Life after the internalization of mortality becomes a journey of self-discovery, personal growth, and a deepening connection to the essence of life itself.

While the acknowledgment of mortality may at first seem disorienting, it can ultimately lead to a life lived with purpose, authenticity, and an appreciation for having a golden croissant in the morning for breakfast.

The internalization of mortality makes one humble and urges us to let go of the physical and psychological baggage that we habitually carry.

Ciao.

Note: This article is a collaborative effort with my colleague ChatGPT. 🙂

Related
Internalizing Mortality

--

--