Living With The Possibility of Dying

The Stoics called it memento mori. The practice of reflection on mortality. John Climacus said, “Someone has said that you cannot pass a day devoutly unless you think of it as your last. Even the Greeks have said some such thing, because they describe philosophy as meditation on death.”

John also says, “The man who has died to all things remembers death, but whoever holds some ties with the world will not cease plotting against himself.”

If today is to be your last, is what you are doing worth it? Did you say a kind word? Do a caring deed? Teach someone? Calm someone? Encourage someone?

This, then, is the sixth step. He who has climbed it will never sin. “Remember your last end, and you will never sin” (Ecclesiasticus 7:36).

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