58 Propositions on Life and Death
by Jean-Michel Espitallier
translated from the French by Jennifer K. Dick
1. Death is everything that no longer exists.
2. For this reason, it’s what, existing, makes exist what no longer exists.
3. Because if death didn’t exist, the non-existence of what no longer exists wouldn’t exist anymore.
4. Therefore if death, being everything that no longer exists, no longer existed, everything that no longer exists would exist, and the inexistence of what no longer exists would not exist anymore. But, no longer existing, death could no longer make exist what no longer exists and its inexistence would make non-existent the inexistence of what had existed. Death cannot therefore exist except by making exist what no longer exists. From which we can deduce that it’s because what existed doesn’t exist anymore that death exists.
5. Given that there’s either life or there’s death, if death no longer exists what doesn’t exist anymore must take refuge in life. And that would be death.
6. If I’m living, I’m not dying. If I’m dead, I’m no longer alive. One can’t be both at once. There’s either life or death, never both at the same time. One follows the other, and always in the same order.
7. Death is therefore at the end of life which is the beginning of death. So much so, that there’s no space, no loophole, between life and death.
8. To be “between life and death” is therefore an abusive use of language.
9. It follows on that the fact of being alive is the irrefutable proof one’s not dead.
10. The problem is that one cannot die while one’s alive. But, at the same time, one cannot die unless one’s alive. Life is therefore the required prerequisite for death.
11. One of life’s inconveniencies is that it makes the fear of death possible.
12. To get over the fear of death one can chose between doing away with death or doing away with fear. So, given that death’s unable to be done away with, and fear is part of life, one must do away with life to do away with the fear of death.
13. From which we may deduce that death is only scary when it’s not around.
14. Death is part of life. So, life without death wouldn’t be life, yet it’s because there is death at the end of life that at a certain point there’s no more life.
15. From life’s point of view, death appears therefore as a second phase of life. Death’s got no point of view.
16. This judgement is made from the position of life. Because one can only evaluate death from life’s standpoint, and within life’s criteria.