Everybody fears death, the greatest enemy of all mankind. Man can travel to the Moon and Mars, but he cannot conquer death. He is helpless before death. There is no home where the angel of death has not visited. Every individual has experienced the death of a loved one—relative or friend. Death follows man twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, and three hundred sixty-five days of a year.
Life and death travel together, they are inter-related and inter-linked. All mankind waits for the day of their death. It will approach certainly, whether early or late. Death is a universal truth. Kings, queens, princes, or princesses cannot escape from death.
It was a dark and stormy night. The angel of death was visiting different homes in different areas, dressed as a woman in black attire. Her hair was messy and she seemed worried and in a great hurry. She knocked at the door of a middle class home. An old man came to open the door and he looked at the woman in the black. She asked, “Can I come in?” He gave her a positive response so she entered.
The room was dimly lighted. The wife of the old man was in a deep sleep, suffering with a cardiac issue. Their children lived in different countries, enjoying luxurious lives. Each night before going to bed, they normally called their parents but today none of them had called their old parents. Death and the old man were sitting on two chairs facing each other and in the middle of them was a table. The angel of death introduced herself to the old man, “I am death. I am on my way. I am in hurry. Actually I was going to another place but when saw the dim light, I knocked and came in.” So Death and the old man had a discussion:
Death: Are you ready to die because now you are very old man?
Old man: Yes, I am ready to leave this world any time. I am over eighty now and I am
living on my government benefits.
Death: That’s good, you seemed to be a content person and you are a grateful man
Old man: Yes, this is the way I lead my life.
Death: How do you see your death? And how do you want to depart from this world?
Old man: Death is a universal truth. I cannot escape from it. One day I have to leave this earth. This is certain.
Death: What is your reaction when you get sick?
Old man: Interestingly enough, last month I was very sick. I could not sleep at night. Throughout the night I was moving from one room to another. I had a stomach ache, backache and heartache. It was terrible. Literally I prayed to God to take me home. I wanted to die then.
Death: Do you fear death?
Old man: I do not fear death but I fear the process of dying. I think, in a sense, death is a state of deep sleep and rest. Even when we sleep at night we are dead, or you might say half dead. In the morning we rise up again.
Death: How do you want to die?
Old man: It is an interesting question. I know I will certainly die, one day.
a) I do not want to be bedridden.
b) I do not want to be sick for a long time.
c) I do not want to be a burden for my family.
d) I do not want it so that my children must take care of me. It is a difficult task. They have their own families, jobs and responsibilities.
e) I want to die as a healthy and active person.
f) I want to die in my bed while I am in a deep sleep.
Death: How do you want people to remember you?
Old man: I wish people to tell the truth about me.
Death: What do you want to have written on your gravestone?
Old man: The old man responded, “This is not my home. My home is above in heaven.”
Now Death and the old man had become friends, and while leaving the room the angel of death added, “My friend, whenever l see you are ready, I will come and take you away from this world.”
And with these words said, the woman in black attire disappea