Questions I Can’t Answer…

"Date: 29th May 2020 Time: 10:58pm location: My kitchen I am currently in that stage between daytime and sleeping, you know the one, when your physically stationary and trying to unwind but you mind is like a thundering storm at sea and asking those impossible to answer questions. What is the reason for our existence? What would the earth be like if I was never born? Why do humans have a higher cognitive function than most other animals? We don’t really have definite answers for these, so our minds just try and fill the blanks to the best of our understanding, and I was in the middle of these thoughts when one of these particular questions stopped my brain in its tracks. Why do we have fear? I know that the amygdala is responsible for that shiver that runs down our backs and the cold sweat on our palms, but what makes that “thing” so scary in the first place to trigger such reactions? This is what left me answerless for a good half an hour, so I decided to write and hoped that would help sought through the cacophony of thoughts currently pinging around my head like a hive of bees. I can conclude that after running several situations through my head, there are a few end results that are common in many: humiliation, pain, loss, but most frequently – death. So now I ask why do we fear death? “In this world nothing can be said to be certain except, death and taxes” as Benjamin Franklin once said. Therefore, in order to determine the reasoning behind our fear of death I need to look at what makes death different and there are a few things that stand out in blaring red lights: it is calendar-less and unpredictable from one person to the next; it is inescapable and finally, we have absolutely no clue what comes next. Consequently, I believe that we do not truly fear the death itself but the uncertainty of what it means for our existence. However, I believe myself an enigma in this self-conclusion as I have never sincerely been scared of death. In order to understand this, you should probably know that I am currently a 14-year-old preparing for my GCSEs and considering what on earth I want to do with my life afterwards. So, to me the uncertainty of my future seems a lot more ominous than the finality of death. You see there may be an element of ambiguity in death nevertheless, there is also a profound clarity in the fact that it is the end of this particular existence. With death comes the promise that this life, with this body and these memories is over, whether there is a second book I cannot say, but I know that this book has unquestionably finished, and I take peace in that singular notion. I do not know what follows death and I do not wish to preach my beliefs for this is not what this notation is about, this is about facing the fear of death; staring at it and not cowering away but taking a defiant stance, and accepting death not as an enemy but as an inevitability. Do you really wish to recoil in terror from a thing you cannot control and waste your life desperately trying to defeat an unvanquishable foe? Life is far too short to fear for tomorrow: so live for today.

by Bella, Age 14

© Copyright 2020 Bella. All rights reserved.