The Denial of Death
What does it mean to be a self-conscious animal?
The idea is ludicrous, if it is not monstrous.
It means to know that one is food for worms
Man is literally split in two:
he has an awareness of his own splendid uniqueness in that he sticks out of nature with a towering majesty,
and yet he goes back into the ground a few feet in order blindly and dumbly to rot and disappear forever.
The irony of man's condition is that the deepest need is to be free of the anxiety of death and annihilation;
but it is life itself which awakens it,
and so we must shrink from being fully alive.
It is not death that a man should fear, but he should fear never beginning to live.