As many might be aware, an epitaph is a short text that is engraved on a gravestone or headstone in the memory of a deceased person. Usually, it written by the loved ones to summarize the life of the person as aptly as possible. One can say that the life of the person gets etched on the sands of time by an epitaph. In few instances, an epitaph is chosen by the person himself before his death. This is where I find the concept gets more interesting.
Immortality has always attracted the human psyche. Though science has increased the longevity of human life, the Gilgamesh quest of conquering death is yet to be achieved. So as of today, the only way to immortality is by one’s achievements or thoughts. And to sum up one’s life in few words, especially if one wants to be remembered for it, must be quite a challenge.
Following are few of the interesting epitaphs I came across in my reading and which stayed with me –
1)“The best is yet to come.”
– Frank Sinatra (American singer)
2)“I had a lover’s quarrel with the world.”
– Robert Frost (American Poet)
3)“Free at last. Free at last. Thank God Almighty I’m Free At Last.”
– Martin Luther King, Jr. (American minister, Leader of civil rights movement)
4)“I told you so, you damned fools.”
– H. G. Wells (English Writer)
5)“Never born, Never died: visited the planet earth between December 11, 1931 and, January 19, 1990.”
– Osho (Indian godman, mystic)
6)“Curiosity did not kill this cat.”
– Studs Terkel (American author)
– Charles Bukowski (American – German poet)
So many emotions! They are philosophical, truthful, clever, hopeful, intriguing and much more. But all have one thing in common – each one brings forth the conviction with which the person lived.
It will be interesting to find out what epitaph would we choose if we were to. A reality check of the inevitable is probably the best way to make the most out of our fleeting time on this planet. I guess I will go with – “Now is always a time for peace and joy. Hence, it is called the present.”
#epitaph #immortality #peace #now #drashishdhadas