What goes up must come down, what has a beginning must surely come to an end. These are but a few statements used to depict the end of an event.
Humans have been in existence for centuries. As for the origin of man, there are several speculations based on science, religion and ethnicity.
Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution about new species arising from a process of natural selection rather than creation. The Biblical account, where the earth was void and creation of man was by the proclamation of words by a Supreme Being (God). This account also gives the name of the first man created as “Adam”.
The Qu’ran describes how Allah created Adam form clay and mud. Moving down to northern Africa, the creation of man in Egyptian myth gives credit to Ra( the Sun god) stating that humankind happened out of the tears of his eyes. For Western Africa, the Yoruba’s and Igbo’s ascribe Obatala and Chineke respectively for being the creator of man.
These are a few stories of how man came to be. One trait is unique to all, the referencing of a Superior power. Man is connected to this Superior power and what differentiates him from his Maker is Death. An inevitable end.
Death is the end of human activities. That is, when the human body no longer functions, becomes inactive and all biological functions are shut down indicated by a permanent stop in the heart, breathe and intellectual functions.
Death is a very sensitive issue and a lot of people are scared to talk about it. When you mention the word death, it is usually followed with “God forbid”, “it’s not my portion” and so on in any case, we must be self aware that death occurs in all living things.
There five (5) universal categories of death;
• Natural death
The concept of Death is a universal component so there are tales about it cutting across all culture and people, each peculiar and significant to them.
Thanatos is death personified . The Greeks believe that he is in charge of death and the one to take humans to the under world after their demise. The study of death and its practices are name after this god and it’s called “Thanatology”.
Mors also known as letus is the equivalent of its greek counterpart. According to this Myth, Mors is connected with Mars( a roman god of war). Like Thanatos he is a punisher who comes to carry his victim upon the expiration of their time on earth.
For the Christian’s, death came as a result of the shortcomings of man. When he fell to sin, he introduced death.
Other stories of death include; A myth from Western Africa , Liberia, involves the god Sno-Nyosa. After he created the world, he sent his four sons from Heaven to visit the Earth. When he asked his sons to return, they were quite happy on Earth, and the Earth itself was keen on keeping them. But Sno-Nyosa, being an omnipotent world-creator, wasn’t going to let anyone else have their way.
Sno-Nyosa called the souls of his sons back to Heaven, but left their lifeless bodies with the Earth. This he continues with the people of the Earth till date as death.(listverse.com)
Moving on to Asia, the Japanese death myth says that before Shinigami, there was Izanami, a divine being who along with her brother/husband Izanagi, created the islands of Japan. The islands were their children. But when Izanami was giving birth to a further child, Kagutsuchi, she died.
Izanagi tried bringing back from the underworld “ Yomi” but when he sae that she was no longer beautiful, he decided to let her stay in Yomi. She tried to chase him down as he fled, but he escaped and sealed off the entrance of Yomi. Since then, she was known as the goddess of Death.
From the above, there are evident similarities between all beliefs and stories. Different people , trying to understand the concept of death. A question on man’s mortality. The search is continuous and in some ways, unknown.
Irrespective of the foundations given, man will still ponder over this concept. Overall, we can decide which convictions and beliefs makes the most sense to us and dispose of those that don’t.
Death is a natural phenomenon, it fears no one. Once born, death lingers. Should death be feared? That is for you to ponder on. How do you interpret Death? Do you see it as;
As the End of life? Beginning of Another life or the Sojourn to a spirit world? What lies on the other side is yet unknown, so make good use of your years on earth and embrace the inevitable end knowing that you have made your mark.