The twelfth Death Cafe’ in Verona, Italy

7th June 2014, Malcesine, near Verona.

A small group of three people took part in this Death Café, kindly hosted by Il Punto Café in Malcesine, a wonderful village on the shores of Lake Garda near Verona. 

There was a very particular light surrounding this meeting and I would like to report the words of one of the participants, Michela, who afterwards described the atmosphere of this summer afternoon:

“How beautiful Malcesine was yesterday afternoon with people in the squares and music and the light from the lake which reverberated on the balconies full of flowers and the warm air soft with the perfume of jasmine. There is a kind of ancient sweetness about a place like this on a June afternoon with the resonance of a thousand memories of other summers and maybe even other existences and this makes one’s heart serenely fragile, almost breakable. I believe this is the infinite sweetness of life’s nostalgia, of how time passes so quickly and of perfect moments. Our awareness saves us. Thank you, Elisabetta Lucchi.”

What does the word “death” bring to mind? Oblivion (the end of the mind, of memories), peace, inexistence (as Epicure says, for example, in his “Letter on happiness”: death is nothing other than the cessation of feelings), “if I think about death I think of blackness and cold and I feel afraid”, “I’m afraid of pain”, anxiety, “I think of a long journey”, a passage which is difficult to manage, a change in our bodies.

Topics of conversation and observations during this meeting: the prevalent theme was accompanying people towards death and how religions (for example Buddhism and Catholicism) have different approaches to this phase of life. For some, the Catholic church intellectualizes the event and there are too many references to religious aspects whereas we should see death as a natural event and make peace with it. For others, religions were formed for biological reasons in order to protect life.

In the second part of the meeting, we focalized on the important things we would like to realize in our lives: loving (overcoming shyness, finding the courage to express one’s love); having children; experiencing joyful relationships (an obstacle to this is that we are taught that all is suffering); developing one’s awareness.


The words used to describe this Death Café’: pleasant, a coming together, impatience, discussing, opening up, confiding, authentic, deep, light.

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