Everyone seems to know it so well, but the funny reality is, no one is alive to tell us what it is like. So I will begin by being utterly honest: I have no idea. Though, the following is my best guess. In the previous post I discussed in extremely general terms the western view of death, and now will continue to attempt to rationalize it's constitution.
When one dies, it is perceived as a permanent ending of a life, an abrupt halt to the being of a person or thing. However; there can be no such thing as a permanent end, so long as you do not identify with the idea of yourself, rather than the whole of reality. One's idea of himself, and the ground of all being, as we have discussed before in 'The Illusion of Perception' are explicitly completely different, but implicitly one in the same. One implies the other. I failed to mention however death's place in life. When one has the sudden realization that he is everything, yet nothing at all (a statement I will elaborate on in future posts), one begins to see this sort of relationship in all things. Let us for now separate life into being, and death into non-being. What constitutes being? Non-being. In order for one to be, there must be the possibility that he cannot be. For one to live his life, one must see first that he is alive, and capable of doing all manner of things. Of course, the argumentative mind, as it well should, would then ask, but what if we are not alive, but dead? This question is rather redundant, as such then our life would be death, and our death life. The true answer is that being, and non-being are one in the same. And so, when one has passed into non-being, the idea of himself, or the idea of his consciousness is destroyed, for such an idea is human, and resides only in the human mind. Having said that, all that can be included in being, views itself as a person; or rather, as itself, and sees all else as the other. Such a view comes from the perception that the Universe at its base is conscious, and that everything which constitutes being, is in some form or another, conscious. Even a stone could be viewed as conscious, albeit a very low form of it, as when it is struck, it creates sound. This is a response to stimuli from what can be considered to be other than the stone.
So, when a man passes from being to non-being, it is really nothing more than a change of state. If being should imply non-being, then non-being should also imply being. The two go together, locked in a paradoxical embrace. So what is death? Life. And life is death. They are one in the same, once the illusions of permanence and fear are removed from their contemplation. This can be seen also as the true definition of karma, or at the very least, the belief at its founding. The rest, such as ideas that one will receive apt punishment or reward for their crimes and good-doings, is a projection of human government and belief. Belief, which is very different from faith. The distinction between the two however, will be saved for further discussion in another post.
The truth then is that being, and non-being are really one in the same; two different sides of the same coin. So then, the idea that death is permanent and filled with horrors and evils that life must win over it, and the fear that accompanies it, is really all just a wonderful joke.