Memento Mori

Memento Mori June 1, 2020

Pacific Spirit Park, Vancouver, BC

I want life to teach me to become better acquainted with death.

During the more strict days of quarantine, I would go for a walk every day in the Mountain View Cemetery. I watched the cherry blossoms bloom and then fade.

I watched the tulips, irises and lilies blossom and then fade. But this undeniable beauty was foregrounded by deep anxiety and fear about the ravages of COVID-19.

There are some headstones in the Mountain View Cemetery with a name and a birth date. The date of death is still not etched into the stone.

This got me thinking.

What if when we were born we received a grave stone and a plot in the cemetery? What if every year on our birthdays we took a pilgrimage to our graves? Would we learn something? Would we be better prepared for death when it came?

A tree in the forest is born and dies in the very same place.

I marvel at that simplicity, that certainty.

About Jason M. Brown, PhD
Jason M. Brown is a Lecturer at Simon Fraser University. He writes about religion, spirituality and ecology. You can read more about the author here.

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!