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David Crosby's poignant advice to people fearing death

David Crosby is a wise and thoughtful person despite his inability to retain relationships with his CSNY bandmates — when he wants to be, of course. As is evident through his songwriting, occasionally through his public comments, and even a few times throughout his Twitter feed, Crosby is a compassionate individual who can be empathetic and caring towards just about anyone not named Donald Trump.

When Crosby sat down for a series of fan questions with Rolling Stone earlier this year, the legendary singer was, as always, an open book, commenting on his past work, his political activism, and his standing with his fellow performers in a candid and honest manner. But it was a question about the personal struggle of ageing and the lurking nature of death that led to Crosby’s most poignant answer.

“David, I’m roughly your age, and I’ve survived a few major medical scares, but they’ve left deep scars, and I really feel like my clock is ticking. Death is on my mind all the time, and I find it hard to enjoy life. You don’t seem to have that problem. How can us old people enjoy the time we have left, especially in the era of COVID when it’s near-impossible to leave our homes,” a fan asked Crosby.

“OK, this one’s fairly simple,” Crosby started. “You have a certain amount of time. You don’t know how much. Maybe I’ve got two weeks; maybe I’ve got two years – maybe I got 20 years! The question is not how much time you have, the question is what are you gonna do with that time. It seems to me that if you spend that time agonising over the fact that you’re gonna die, you’re wasting that time.”

“If you spend that time doing everything you can to be happy, to help other people, to create, to make new things – to make anything better for anybody – if you spend your time doing positive stuff like that, then the time that you have left – whatever amount it is – will be well-spent. And that I think is the key.”

Crosby summarised his feelings by saying, “If you try that really hard – try to stay positive and try to think about today and the fact that you may die tomorrow buy you’ve got today, so why don’t you use the heck out of today? That’s a good idea. That’s how I see it.”

Check out the Q+A down below.

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