There seems to be an overwhelmingly dark energy surrounding the concept of death because society teaches us that it represents “goodbye.” In reality, when a loved one dies, our souls aren’t saying goodbye to each other, but rather, “See you soon.” Even though death may represent our final chapter on Earth, our souls continue on and will eventually reunite. We are all fundamentally connected to one another, so in a way, we never really leave one another.
Part of the human experience includes our emotional bodies. We have a full range of emotions on a very broad spectrum and often times, when dealing with loss or grief, we cast our emotions aside. By not allowing our emotions to pass through us, they imprint on our hearts, which in Sanskrit is called a “Samskara.” This imprint, or Samskara, creates an emotional blockage, which prevents us from enjoying the joys in life because life is always competing with that emotional block or event. A crucial part in accepting death and saying “see you soon” to another soul is to accept our emotions. This can be difficult for adults to understand, let alone to try to explain to children. Thankfully, the following books can help children and adults alike to accept life and death, as they illustrate the beauty in these counterparts.
Cry, Heart, But Never Break by Glenn Ringtved
Inspired by his own experience in trying to explain his mother’s death to his children, Danish Author Glenn Ringtved wrote this enchanting tale, teaching us the importance of accepting death and the beauty in duality. The title Cry, Heart, But Never Break was actually a phrase his mother said, emphasizing that we can feel our emotions without our world crashing down.
The story starts with Death entering into the home of a dying woman and her four grandchildren. It’s clear that Death has come for the older woman, but in an effort to not frighten the kids, Death leaves its scythe by the door, showing that Death isn’t this dark energy we often perceive it to be. The children quickly realize what’s happening, so they continuously pour Death cups of coffee, trying to stall the inevitable. They sit around the table drinking coffee together, a clear display of the normalcy in Death and how natural it is.
One of the children asks Death, “Why does Grandma have to die?”
In response, Death tells a story of four children, Sorrow and Grief, who lived life sadly and slowly, and Joy and Delight, who lived life happily but felt something was missing because they couldn’t fully enjoy their happiness. Once the couples finally met, they fell in love because they are perfect counterparts, Sorrow and Joy, and Grief and Delight.
Death explains, “It is the same with life and death… What would life be worth if there were no death? Who would enjoy the sun if it never rained? Who would yearn for the day if there were no night?”
The book reads, “Some people say Death’s heart is as dead and black as a piece of coal, but that is not true. Beneath his inky cloak, Death’s heart is as red as the most beautiful sunset and beats with a great love of life.”
The book ends by Death taking the grandmother and the children experience a moment of immense sadness, and then a wave of peacefulness washes over them. They accept Death and, in a way, come to appreciate it, a lesson we could all find value in learning.
The Little Soul and The Sun by Neale Donald Walsch
What is essentially Walsch’s infamous novel Conversations With God transformed into a heart-warming short story, The Little Soul and The Sun explores reincarnation, duality, oneness, and the beauty in finding lessons within every experience.
The story starts off with a dialogue between a very young soul and God. The Little Soul is curious about its identity and even though it knows it is The Light, it wants to experience what it’s like to feel light. God compares the Little Soul to a candle that is one of millions that lights up the Sun, and without the Little Soul’s bright candlelight, the Sun wouldn’t be the Sun…