I recently signed up with Donate Life California
, the official California online organ donor registry. If you're in California and you haven't registered as an organ donor, I hope you will. If you have religious objections, please look into it anyway — many of the religion-based arguments against organ donation have been thoroughly and effectively refuted by knowledgeable members of said religions.
Once you've registered, the next step is to inform your next of kin and loved ones of your decision. Next of kin are often able to stop an organ donation, even if the donor had previously expressed a desire to donate. Make sure they know what you want and that it's important to you.
I've discussed this with spiritualmonkey
and with my dad, and will do so again to be sure we're all on the same page. I also want to go on record here — while realizing that this is not legally binding on anyone, it is an expression of my wishes. After I'm gone, if you hear that whoever's making the decision about my corpse is refusing to donate, just point them back here and tell them to rethink.
So, for the record:
I believe that after I die, the body that remains behind will be only a husk. The consciousness that currently animates this bodymind will be gone. My flesh will be of no use to me any more, but it might be of use to someone else.
After I die, I want my next of kin to give permission for an autopsy. After the autopsy is done, donate every organ and every scrap of tissue that can help someone else, whether that's directly as a transplant, or indirectly as a donation to a medical school.
Deal with whatever's not useful through cremation or eco-burial and scatter my dust, preferably on a sunny hillside near a creek or other body of water.
The only thing we know for sure is that we're all going to die. Once I've crossed over this terrifying world-ocean
, don't knock a hole in the bottom of my rowboat — send it back so someone else can use it.