I had the good fortune to be with my father during his last week of life, when he departed in September 2008. I was able to keep him at his home and take care of him, thus avoiding hospitalisation.
For the past 20 years of his life, he had gone every year to India for six weeks, and also travelled twice with me to Bangladesh. So we had a rather close connection. Now, at the very end of his life, he was immensely grateful that I had cancelled all my travel plans and had come to take care of him. We spent a very sweet and intimate six days together until he left his body in full consciousness, in a very peaceful and focused way.
This experience has served as an unforgettable lesson for me, how to leave this world. It greatly reduced my fear of death and made me understand that it is actually not such a big deal. We have gone through it all so many times already! We just don’t remember…
He responded, “But that’s so embarrassing!”
And I explained, “Now you will understand that you are not this body.”
He replied, “I think I know this already.”
I further deliberated, and then said, “Now you will actually experience it! Your situation will only be embarrassing when you identify with your body. If you know you are not the body, then you will simply treat your body like a vehicle, which is falling apart. It will not be embarrassing.”
He gratefully accepted those explanations. When the moment came where he needed help in the bathroom, he looked at me with a deep sigh and surrendered to the situation, throwing overboard some aspects of the false identifications with his gross and subtle body. I could perceive what intense purification he was going through.
Old age and disease have many amazing lessons to teach us, which are all extremely humbling. Our false ego is being crushed to pieces, until we are ready to let go of it.
On the 11th of November I flew back to Cologne....
Your servant, Devaki dd