Dying consciously as a life goal
Hi, my name is Sunshine and I want to die.
It's not like I have much choice in the matter, unless Neuralink allows me to transform myself into an AI system in my lifetime.
The thanatos runs deep in this one, though. Occasionally manifest in pathological self-harming, the death wish is not something I believe to be inherently pathological. I've been privileged enough to watch school-age Tibetan monks crowd around skeletons and mummies in museums giggling while their abbot teaches them about death.
But yeah there are times that my death wish does become problematic, and that's when I know I need to avail myself of psychedelic-assisted therapy for treatment-resistant depression and PTSD.
Psilocybin is also emerging as the de facto intervention for easing end-of-life anxiety, which seems to be the opposite of the death wish but stems from the self-same hub of existential angst.
We're going to die, why not skeleton our way down the mountain?
One of my goals with Lucid Humanity Consciousness Labs is to promote research in this area and to provide pathways for conscious dying. Sleep is a mini-death, anyway. Through Dream and Death Labs, perhaps we can even begin to understand the disembodied elements of consciousness or "self." If we take the time to learn the Tibetan art and science of dying, and also invest more in psychedelic science, I believe we can witness some major scientific breakthroughs in our lifetime. Few things excite me more.
with skillful means.
It all ties in with mindfulness and lucid dreaming. Sleep is to death what lucid dreaming is to life. Dreaming consciously and dying consciously are different in degree only. It's my desire to do both, to lucid dream while my body's still around and to die consciously when it's ready to dissolve into beetle dust.
What about suicidal ideation, or physician-assisted suicide?
Psychedelics would help by reducing the pathological components thereof, while liberating the individual to choose whether or not to terminate life.
More importantly for policymaking, if we want to help people who actually don't want to die but whose depression is so severe that they might just kill themselves, we need to legalize psychedelic medicine now.
Anthony Bossis spearheads research in this area. The findings in clinical trials have been outstanding enough to radically transform hospice/palliative care, as well as standard psychiatric care for those who are not dying but wish they were.
I was in a museum once when a group of young monks, schoolchildren, led by their abbot, crowded around a skeleton enclosed in a plexiglass case. They all giggled and stared as the abbot issued the teaching.