Tuesdays With Morrie by Mitch Albom

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How does Morrie explain his near-death experence in Tuesdays with Morrie? Why do you think he asks to see the hibiscus plant?

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Morrie describes his near-death experience as

"a terrible spell. It went on for hours. And I really wasn't sure I was going to make it. No breath. No end to the choking."

At the point where he started to get dizzy, he says he

"felt a certain peace...that (he) was ready to go."

Morrie describes the feeling he had upon realizing this as

"a most incredible feeling...the sensation of accepting what was happening  (and) being at peace."

He likens the experience to

"Crossing a bridge into something unknown...being ready to move on to whatever is next."

Morrie says that this peace with the idea of dying is something that everyone looks for, and that when it is achieved, one can

"do the really hard thing...which is...mak(ing) peace with living."

To illustrate his point, he asks to see the hibiscus plant on the window ledge behind him. Holding it up near his eyes, he smiles, acknowledging the kinship between himself and the hibiscus, because they are both a "part of nature." Morrie says that with the acceptance that one is a part of the natural world comes the realization that all living things die. Death is a natural occurrance, and once one has made peace with this fact, one can die without fear ("The Thirteenth Tuesday").

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