For those who feel comfortable enough to accept their own death, there does seem to be a great peace about them. Death is the natural ending to our human life at some point. Illness or accident can bring it on prematurely. If we view death as less of an "unknown, horrible thing", perhaps that is the "insight" that gives us the ability to begin to think beyond life to death in reasonableness, and there perhaps connect with our soul as it fades from us. How odd, that I now feel more comfortable about these matters, and I have no religious affiliations, no belief in the religious teachings of "heaven and hell". I don't live by some reward system that promises salvation if I do this or do that. I don't fear an Armageddon any more and it feels so wonderful not to be under all those unhealthy yokes of bondage.
Perhaps death is not the enemy that we conceive it to be, but the natural passing from this life to another existence--a necessary passage. These are things we just cannot comprehend. I vividly remember when I was quite small, being with my great grandmother in my grandmother's kitchen. She was just sitting by the screen door, while grandma was cooking. She wasn't sick, but just very old; and she was very tired that day. There was always so much sweet love from her for me. She took my hands and told me to look out into the yard. There was a vision that she was seeing that I couldn't see, but she told me all about it. Of course, I didn't know what was happening, but she was actually dying right before me....just slipping away there in here rocker. She described a bright light coming down from (heaven) with some beautiful creatures (angels) that had come for her. There was absolutely no fear in her voice or manner. Then she just wasn't there anymore...... I remember that my grandmother, her daughter, came over to us and told me she was "gone". I kept trying to "see" what she had seen out in the yard, but I couldn't see anything, and I think I thought that she'd just gone to sleep.Everything was quite calm. They took me from the kitchen and then the doctor was called in to verify death. This was a very early "marker" for me, as far as death and dying, and I often recall it from memory--because it is a good memory.
Yet, others in my life have been very ill, and suffering great pain, and death was the end of that agony. I always think about those that have already gone ahead and I wonder a great deal about where they are and what they are doing. I lost my first husband to suicide, which was a terrible tragic end, and one that I had much difficulty accepting for a long time. For those that are left behind, the pain is so much greater. For those that have gone through that passage, their pain is over.
I think there are signs, but not everyone can see or understand them, unless they are in tune with these things. For the matters of death are the matters of life. Our instincts can become even more fine tuned if we work on it; not everyone is at such a stage that they would do that. I think it does behoove us to learn to feel more comfortable about our end here. Some cultures and belief systems have parties when there is death. It's difficult to think beyond how awful it is not to have someone we love be apart of our physical life anymore. That is the pain of loss. We cannot reach them with any of our physical senses anymore, and we grieve for that. But, there can be great comfort in that loss, if we believe that the cycle of life and death is what being human is all about.