Walt Whitman Attitude Towards Death Analysis

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Walt Whitman is one of the leading mystic poets of death in the field of American poetry. Death is assigned a distinguished space in his poetic universe of Leaves of Grasswhich immensely colours his vision of life. This paper is an attempt to present Whitman’s attitude towards death vis-à-vis global mystic perspective.

Reality of Death

Whitman reposes absolute faith in the real reality of death. Death is an established fact of life and is intimately related to it: “O living always, always dying”,and “Have youguess’d you yourself would not continue”(Leaves of Grass, 351). In Sikhism, too, the inevitability of death is emphatically stressed: “Everything gets devoured by death” (SGGS,15). Islam also shows that death befalls every human-being
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His divinely inspired vision led him to the domain extending beyond the reach of empirical experience. The unknown, the unseen, the unheard and the unexpressed revealed to his mind the deepest truths about the ultimate reality. For Whitman, according to V.N.Dhavale, “the world of senses is not real world, it is only a poor substitute for the real, the ideal , the transcendental”(Walt Whitman 43).Whitman’s approach to the transcendental nature of life is free from any obscurity or dogmatism.

Limitations of Material Life

Whitman is invariably analysing the material in terms of transcendental in his poetic universe to highlight its limitations. For Whitman, the material life, though alluring, is short-lived. It is merely a transit camp where the spiritual searcher equips himself for encountering hazards and obstacles of the subsequent spiritual journey. Whitman urges the divine lover in “Song of the Open Road” to delink himself from the pleasures and temptations of earthly life and opt for the road not takenfor enjoying the peace and bliss of heavenly life:

“Be not discouraged, keep on, there are divine things well enveloped,
I swear to you there are divine things more beautiful than words can
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