A lot of people shy away from the topic of death.  It’s uncomfortable.  But it happens to each and every one of us!  Death gives us something to think about, talk about and share in common.  We can comfort ourselves and each other when we open up about our mortality fears.

Multitudes of people have written books and articles about the subject of death.  It’s best to get used to the idea that you and your loved ones will pass away eventually.  In fact, you’ll enjoy life more once you come to terms with it.

Here are some great quotes to get you thinking about death in a new light.

Famous historian Thomas Fuller summed it up when he said, “The first breath is the beginning of death.”  Every parent must face this fact as soon as they fall in love with their newborn children.  Death is a normal and important part of life; the end saddens us precisely because living is so dear to our hearts.  Parents always hope their children will outlive them; the new generation should surpass the old.

Many believe that death really is part of a universal cycle.  Sir Walter Scott reinforces that notion with these words: “Death – the last sleep? No, it is the final awakening.”

Whether you look at death as an ending or a beginning, one thing is certain.  The most important thing is what you choose to do with your time here on earth, as a living being.  Mark Twain once said, “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”

Countless poets and authors have written their opinions about death and its inevitability.  Surprisingly, Steve Jobs (creator of Apple) gave one of the best statements summing it all up in his 2001 commencement address at Stanford University:

“No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.”

And Yoda of Star Wars put the fear of death into perspective when he said, “Death is a natural part of life. Rejoice for those around you who transform into the Force.”

Whether you view it as the Force, or Heaven, or reincarnation, the afterlife is a place where all humans will find themselves.  And that is a relief in itself.  Whatever happens, we are never really alone.

What are your favorite quotes about death or our own mortality?