What is Death?

"No one knows whether death may not be the greatest of all blessings for a man, yet men fear it as if they knew that it is the greatest of evils" - Apology, by Plato

Since taking a philosophy class at college, I've developed a slight obsession and can't stop thinking about it.  Death is such an abstract concept, as is life, happiness, justice, and piety, but let's focus on death this time.  The only person who could describe death to us are, unfortunately, dead.  How do we understand death then? Can we?

As Plato stated, death could be a totally liberation experience, yet we all fear it, whether we deny that fear or not.  Maybe it's just a fear of the unknown?  Or perhaps it's due to our ignorance on the matter.  Personally, I would love to know what death is like.

Is it an eternity of darkness, as if we're sleeping without dreams?  Is it a reuniting experience with lost friends and family?  The latter is more appealing, at least, to me.  Regardless of religious views, I don't think anybody desires an endless fall into an abyss of shadows.

Please, anybody, comment your views.  I'm dying (no pun intended) to hear different viewpoints.  This damned philosophy has my mind on a roller coaster of thoughts.

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