When I heard the news of Dr. Wayne Dyer's death, I was immediately filled with questions: Was he sick? Did he have an accident? Did he experience pain in the moments leading up to his death?
Being someone who maintains a close relationship with death, I know that these questions aren't completely out of the ordinary. In fact, majority of people likely ask these questions when they hear about the death of a loved one or friend. Curiosity is a natural response to death. It also serves as a coping mechanism as our mind and hearts acclimate to the news.
Like many, Wayne Dyer's death came as a surprise to me, but it also came with ease.
"Don't die with your music still inside you" is one of my favorite quotes by Wayne Dyer. I have done my best to embrace this quote whole-heartedly, which has led me to my path in end-of-life care advocacy. When a person chooses to embrace their music within, fear often rears its ugly head. Instead of pushing down my fears, I have learned to invite them in for a cup of tea. I listen and then I let them go.
The fear of death is one of the most common fears that humans share. The other day my partner got in the car, looked at me with her bright eyes and vulnerability and said, "I am afraid to die." I replied, "Sometimes I am too."
The following day, I found out about Wayne Dyer's death. After observing the questions that arose in my mind, I found a deep sense of peace. The words of my teacher and end-of-life pioneer, Ram Dass, finally clicked. "Dying is absolutely safe."
The death of Wayne Dyer taught me that death does not have to be a dramatic event. It can indeed be a natural and peaceful transition. There does not have to be a tremendous amount of suffering, it can simply be a transition into another room, as Wayne Dyer often described it. Wayne Dyer left his body in the night, making a not-so-big-deal of his passing. Though his life, and now death, are significant, I believe there is a rich teaching that has floated to shore. The teaching is Grace -- to experience as much grace and ease with death as possible. When one removes the veil of drama and fear around death, life can be viewed through a clear lens.
In this clarity, lies your music.