As uncomfortable as it is, everybody dies. Perhaps one of the more significant life lessons is that death is a part of life, it comes to us all, everyone and everything. This truth is not one which we like to face, yet it meets us every day. We are careful (most of us) to try to avoid death – driving carefully, getting smoke alarms, going to the gym, avoiding “danger”. We have all known someone who is no longer living, we have experienced loss. We are all aware of the daily news of death, disaster and destruction as it happens to other people, somewhere else. Then someone who we all “know” dies and “the world” (by which I mean media) is full of lament and surprise.
I’m often challenged by the deaths of famous people. In part I want to acknowledge their contributions to whatever they “did” which of course is only an element of their lives (and I am passionate about the arts – as anyone that knows me will attest). I also find it confusing or perhaps perplexing – how whilst on this very same day, something like 151,600 people die around the world, about 55.3 million a year. These are not unknown people, but simply not known by many – like you and I.