Death is not the enemy. It
appears to be so because we cling too much to life. The fear of death arises out
of the clinging. And because of this clinging we are unable to know what death
is. Not only that, we are unable to know what life is too.
The man who is not able to know death will not be able to know life either, because deep down they are two branches of the same tree, If you are afraid of death, basically you will remain - because it is life that brings death. It is through living that you come to dying.
You would like to become stagnant frozen, so that you don't flow, so that death never happens. You would like to get stuck somewhere on the way, so that you never come to the ocean and disappear.
A man who is afraid of death clings to life too much; but the irony is that even if he clings too much to life, he is not able to see what life is. His clinging to life becomes a barrier to understanding life too. He cannot understand death, he cannot understand life; he remains in a deep misunderstanding, in a great ignorance.
So this is one of the most fundamental things to see: that death is not the enemy. Death cannot be the enemy. In fact, the enemy exists not. The whole existence is one. All is friendly. All is yours, it belongs to you and you belong to it. You are not strangers here.
Existence has given birth to you; existence has mothered you. So when you die, you simply go back to the original source to rest and to be born again.
Death is like a rest. Life is activity: death is rest. And without rest activity is not possible. Life is like the day and death is like the night. And without the night, the day cannot exist on its own. It is night that prepares you for the day, it is night that rejuvenates you, gives you energy back. You move in your deep sleep to the very point where death will lead you.
Every night you go into death - it is a small death - hence in the morning you feel so alive. Unfortunate are those people who don't die every night. In the morning they are more tired than they were when they went to bed. They were dreaming, they were still clinging to life in their dreams. They didn't go in a let-go. They didn't allow death to take possession of them and mend many things and give rest, relaxation, new energy. These are the unfortunate people. The fortunate people are those who go into a tremendously deep sleep, a dreamless sleep. In the morning they are again alive, ready to face life in its manifold forms, full of joy, full of response, ready to take any challenge that life proposes.
Death is like the night. Life is yang and death is yin. Life is male, death is female. Life is aggression, ambition - a great effort to conquer many things. And death is relaxation from all aggression - an inward journey. One relaxes into oneself. Zen people call it 'the asylum of rest'.
Life is an adventure; you go away from yourself, you go farther and farther away. The farther away you are, the more miserable you become. You go in search of happiness, but the more you search for happiness, the farther you are from it. And you can see it in your own life. This is not a philosophy, this is a simple statement of fact. Everybody goes in search of happiness. But the farther away you go, the more miserable you become.
Life is a search for happiness - but brings misery. One day you are fed up and tired and bored. That adventure no longer appeals. You relax into yourself, you come back. The closer you come to yourself, the more happy you become. The more you forget about happiness, the more happy you become. The day you stop seeking and searching for happiness, you are happy.
Life is a promise for happiness, but only a promise. It never fulfills. Death fulfills it. Hence, I repeat: death is not the enemy. Death is your home where you come after many many journeys - tired, frustrated, exhausted - to seek shelter, to seek rest, to gain again the lost vitality. One thing.
Second thing: life and death are not so much apart as we think. You think life happened the day you were born, and death will happen the day you die. So there is a seventy or eighty or one hundred years' gap. It is not so. Birthing and dying go on together your whole life. The moment you start breathing you start dying too. Each moment there is life and there is death - two wheels of the same cart. They go together. They are simultaneous. You cannot put them so far apart - seventy years is too much distance. You cannot put them so far apart - they are there every moment. Every moment something is being born in you and something is dying.
Dying and living are together. In seventy years' time you are finished with this dying and living. You are tired of the game. You would like to go home. You have played with sand castles. You have argued, fought for your sand castles: This is mine and that is thine, and enough is enough! Evening has come and the sun is setting and you want to come home.