Death begins with birth. It is a process. Life and death intimately, inseparably together. Every moment we are dying and every moment we are born. If one can look closely every moment is made new by death. Death is the basis of all creation. Death gives a space for new ideas, new inventions and new way of life although the changes seems frightening. You can not avoid death even if you forget it. You must live with it to know it.
But we always look at death through the smoke of fear. We seek continuity and death has no continuity. One is fearful of death because death is going to destroy everything which brain has put together.
Money, property, reputation, prestige, power, all relationships is the self. The self is nothing but the image put together by thought. This is ME. This ME is seeking continuity and security is afraid of death. The ego is afraid of death.
There is no more yesterday but the mind carries it. And mind is afraid of loosing this continuity.
Meditation is death. Meditation means consciously dropping that which death is going to destroy. Meditation means consciously passing through death. If you don’t get too much attached to things put together by thought then you can enter in meditation. Then ‘breathing out’ is death and ‘breathing in’ is birth. That’s why Buddha gives so much emphasis on watching the breathing. Becoming mindful of breathing is the basis of his meditation. If you keep watching your berating, thoughts slow down and mind disappears. If you are watching your breathing there is no past or no future and there is no mind.
You have to go through it, only then you will know the meaning of death. With the awareness of death What was meaningful up to now becomes meaningless.
There is nothing more certain than death. Everything else in life is uncertain. You must remember death and make it your focal point in life.