OTHER RECOLLECTIONS AS MEDITATION SUBJECTS
[(7) MINDFULNESS OF DEATH]
1.  Now comes the description of the development of mindfulness of death,
which was listed next (III.105).
Herein, death (maraṇa) is the interruption of the life faculty included within [the
limits of] a single becoming (existence). But death as termination (cutting off), in
other words, the Arahant’s termination of the suffering of the round, is not
intended here, nor is momentary death, in other words, the momentary dissolution
of formations, nor the “death” of conventional (metaphorical) usage in such
expressions as “dead tree,” “dead metal,” and so on.
2. As intended here it is of two kinds, that is to say, timely death and untimely
death. Herein, timely death comes about with the exhaustion of merit or with the
exhaustion of a life span or with both. Untimely death comes about through
kamma that interrupts [other, life-producing] kamma.
3. Herein, death through exhaustion of merit is a term for the kind of death that
comes about owing to the result of [former] rebirth-producing kamma’s having
finished ripening although favourable conditions for prolonging the continuity
of a life span may be still present. Death through exhaustion of a life span is a term
for the kind of death that comes about owing to the exhaustion of the normal life
span of men of today, which measures only a century owing to want of such
excellence in destiny [as deities have] or in time [as there is at the beginning of
an aeon] or in nutriment [as the Uttarakurus and so on have].1 Untimely death is
a term for the death of those whose continuity is interrupted by kamma capable
of causing them to fall (cāvana) from their place at that very moment, as in the
case of Dūsi-Māra (see M I 337), Kalāburājā (see J-a III 39), etc.,2 or for the death
of those whose [life’s] continuity is interrupted by assaults with weapons, etc.,
due to previous kamma.  All these are included under the interruption of
Amplifications are from Vism-mhṭ, p. 236.
“The word ‘etc.’ includes Nanda-yakkha, Nanda-māṇava, and others” (Vism-mhṭ
236). See A-a II 104, and M-a IV 8.