“Be here now.” These were the famous words of the late spiritual guru Ram Dass. The message speaks to both the idea that life is short and that we need to maximize meaning in every second of our lives. Our quest to maximize meaning invites several questions:
- How do we live our best lives each day?
- How can we make the world a better place right here right now?
- How can I incorporate more acts of love into my life?
These are all important questions to make sense of our time on earth, but by asking only questions that focus on right now, we avoid important questions about legacy. What if we asked ourselves these questions when it comes to our death? Could we translate our focus on purpose in the present tense for ourselves and our loved ones?
This Valentine's Day, let's take a moment to reflect on how we show more acts of love through life –– and the end of it.
Death: The great reminder to love well
Modern life is chaotic. We run this way and that. We feel more disconnected from those we love. But when we’re faced with the loss of a friend, family member, or loved one, it can force us to stop, and reconnect. Death has the unique ability to make us reflect on how well we’ve loved and lived. It’s an inescapable reminder of our mortality.
Incorporating acts of love can be simple. We just have to ask ourselves: Have I told those I love how much I love them recently? Have I written notes reminding someone how much they mean to me? Have I told someone I am proud of them? Are we prioritizing quality time together?
Together forever: the meaning of shared space and remembrance
We often think of death in terms of who has passed, and what their memory means to those who survive them. But by planning ahead for end-of-life, we can also craft how our legacy is experienced by choosing how and where we will be remembered.
What makes a Better Place Forest different is the unique control we offer for the ritual of remembrance. Our forests offer a greater opportunity to bring loved ones together. Our forests are a peaceful, quiet, natural environment that puts love and respect at the center of the remembrance ritual. Sharing in the memory of a loved one becomes intertwined with a carefully chosen shared space in which to do it.
Modern death, a sustainable modern love story
What if we thought about modern death as a modern act of love? Our final gift of connection and remembrance to our loved ones, but also an expression of our extraordinary passion for nature and the earth. Many of us are acutely aware of our impact on the environment. We make decisions each day to lesson our footprint; to leave the earth better than we found it. We can all choose an end-of-life solution that honors that same desire, one that guarantees a return to the earth as an integral part of the circle of life. Resting in purpose and oneness with the Earth can be our gift to each other and the world. It honors our respect for life even in death.
This Valentine’s Day, let’s celebrate the ones we love and rethink what our love story looks like, not just in life, but in death. Rest in peace, with purpose and passion.