Grace Chinga and the Reality of Death: Final Goodbye

By: Wonderful Mkhutche

 

Grace Chinga is now two days in her grave. But her sudden death still remains a shock. For those who loved her music, and everything she gave as an artist to the industry, it will take a great effort of courage to come to terms with her passing.

church member mourning
church member mourning

It is not easy, to lose someone who had just made a Facebook post that she will be coming up with new music, and then she goes to the other side of life within hours. She had worked hard for the songs she said she was going to release. She had hope and expectations that once again she will be sharing with Malawians one thing she has loved for her entire life; music.

But it all comes back to the question of life. When such unfortunate things happen, especially to someone you looked up to, the inside of you is filled with fear. You literally shake and get depressed. If you were in the mood of believing that life has a purpose, and that you were born for a reason, such moments knock you down and you start feeling vulnerable.

Life comes out before us all as a monster. Our souls feel it as moving past us looking for its next victim. And the thought that you may be next on the list is not easy to live with.

We all understand and accept that one day we will die. But perhaps what keep us afraid are the   questions of when and how. If these were known to people, the fear of death could have been defeated to an extent among us all.

Fans: fully packed Robins Park
Fans: fully packed Robins Park

But as far as death’s control on life is concerned, these are the two questions that bother us all. After them, for those who believe in life after death, they start worrying of where their souls will end up, hell or paradise. There is no one alive who can claim to have completely defeated the fear of death. That is the reality of life; humanity is controlled by death.

There are thousands of songs and quotations on death. Some are inspiring, some scare us and some expose us to the reality of life, that it is fragile. Let us go back to the one Billy Kaunda.

In his 2000 song, ‘Ndine Mbuli’ from his third album, ‘Muyime Kaye’, he summarized the reality of humanity and how it relates with death. He sung: “Ngakhale ndimaona, koma ndine wakhungu (Even though I am able to see, but I am blind). In those five words, Billy Kaunda stripped naked humanity and its claim to know. We may have a control over most of the things that happen to us as human beings.

But still, there is something more to this life that in our entire history as human beings we will never be able to control or understand. There is a limit to our senses. And the sudden Grace’s death has just reminded us of our position in this universe as human beings. Life is fragile.

There were a lot of stories that went around regarding her death. They were all growing healthy on the fact that, as humans, we are yet to come to terms with death. It has not sunk into us that death, no matter how and when it comes, is part of our mortality. Yes, it is sad to lose a person like Grace, someone who dedicated her life to saving and serving people through her music. She was beautiful inside-out. Although we regret her death, to a large extent, we celebrate all her achievements as an artist.

But it all comes down to us, the ones who are alive: What are we doing with our lives? When one day death will call us, to the land of skull and bones, what footprints are we going to leave in this world?

About the writer: Wonderful Mkhutche is an author, a political science and a manuscript editor and developer.

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