Can I remind my death to improve my life?

Can I remind my death to improve my life

Lately I have been feel like life is passing me by, so I downloaded an app that reminds me five times a day that I'm going to die. I thought it would help me to accept my mortality and focus on the things that really matter, but it just makes me anxious. Is something wrong with me? Is worrying the point? Do you think these apps can be helpful?

- Executed


Kiss to death, dear,

I do not think that something is wrong with you. Or rather, you seem to be suffering from a problem that is endemic to all of humanity, a gender with an almost limitless ability to survive in rejection of the inevitable one. Even vivid memories of our demise - whether it's the death of a loved one or a phone call - leave us with the fear and trembling that deserves the abyss and instead suffers our lives with despair or -clear, environmental fear. "Death," said WH Auden, "is the sound of thunder in the distance at a picnic." That, by accident, is one of the values ​​revealed by WeCroak, the app that I think you are using, which accompanies his death memorabilia with bits of literary wisdom from Kierkegaard, Pablo Neruda, Margaret Atwood , and others.

We live in an age of slo-mo crisis, the ones that appear at a distance that makes them easily overlooked. Social security declines year after year. The glaciers are melting faster, but still at a glacial rate. The oceans are warming to such an extent that the toad can live on a proverbial toad. Death is behind all of them. At times, the severity of our situation is exacerbated by a natural disaster or the DA's climate report, but the warning bells fade with the rhythms of the news cycle. The Doomsday Clock - perhaps the most progressive attempt to keep our focus on these threats - is currently sitting at 100 seconds until midnight, setting us at around a minute and a half, in a time-threatening time frame , since our last recession.

Death commemoration apps are pretty much like Doomsday Clock for the individual. Of course, some have real clocks so you can watch, in real time, the hours you have left. The Death Clock, a website that has been active since 1998, predicts the day of your death, although its estimates are based on relatively crude data points - your age, BMI, whatever you are. smoking. Several years ago, the horror film Count down imagine an app that was able to intuit, down to the second one, the time of a person’s death, with the consent of a user serving as a pact with the devil. (Documentary: "Death? There's an App for That.") The film inspired a real app built on the same foundation - without, obviously, the supernatural experience, but it destroyed people enough to be short-lived from the App Store.

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WeCroak is not so morbid. His inspirational words about mortality are intended to remind users to stop and consider what they are doing, a kind of companion to the many mental apps. His co-founder came up with the idea while engaged in a Candy Crush addiction, and many users have said that the app, which tends to block those hours while away on Twitter or TikTok, has forced them to go against what is of their lives spent on social media. The product belongs, in other words, to that ever - growing sector of technology that is designed to solve technology - created problems. If digital platforms remain our most trusted draw from the raw realities of our mortality - so is the logic - we may be able to steer the same tools to break through these psychological buffers and deliver us to greater comfort. clear by our future recession.

WeCroak, as you may already know, is partly inspired by the Bhutanese population saying that it says happiness can be achieved by considering death five times a day. Bhutan is often regarded as one of the happiest countries in the world, and WeCroak seems to trade a steep exoticism that is not uncommon in intellectual culture, showcasing Eastern traditions as the antidotes that will finally free us from the passage of today. It's no surprise to me that it's only increased your anxiety, though. It's not so easy to just be willing to go against a fact that you have become aware of to ignore. (If anything, the idea that we can reverse the whole flow of Western mortality denial with a free app is more a sign of our technological vigor than its tonic.) Bhutanese to consider death has grown out of a larger cultural context that does. not to avoid mortality, as evidenced in the country’s complex funeral rites and the tradition of observing a 49-day mourning period. Bhutan's main religion, Buddhism, teaches that transgenderism is not just about fleeing but about accepting brutal truths - that is, that life itself suffers.

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