A short introduction to the Philosopy called Death.

Essay by tcookUniversity, Bachelor'sA-, May 2002

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My paper is based on John Kearney, A Short Introduction to Philosophy called Death. I have selected to write on "My Confession" by Leo Tolstoy. Tolstoy takes a look back on his life and considers it to be meaningless and a regrettable failure. His story gives us the insight into his thinking as he begins to forever change his ideas, actions, and his radical development on the Philosophy of Death.

Leo Tolstoy begins his insight by telling us a story about a traveller out in the plain who is overtaken by a wild beast. The traveller has no lifesaving option. If he falls to the bottom of the waterless well, the "dragon of death" will devour him. If he climbs out of the waterless well, the wild beast will tear him to pieces. Clinging to the twig of a wild bush, growing on the side of the well, he temporarily saves himself from the "dragon."

But then he faces the mice, one white (representing the day), and the other black (representing the night) who is nibble at the "branch of life." (John Kearney, "Death" page 158).

This story of the traveller is a description of how we can not escape death. It is also similar to those who have been told of a serious illness of impending death. They hear the clock ticking more clearly than the rest of us. Yet, the turned up volume of ticking in our ears, should not distract us from realizing that the journey continues; still winds itself along the curves of our existence; however uncomfortable at times, toward that destination called death or eternal life.

Although we all know, the clock of our lives is in never-ending fashion ticking away, Tolstoy explains that no one can escape the "dragon." In a sense,