The most important thing about Chess is to keep the king safe. It gets castled behind its pawns and is protected by all pieces. A comfy life, no worries, and no ventures onto the board. It remains inactive. In fact, it remains rather lifeless.
Until the endgame approaches and things start to change: Pieces have fallen left and right, the board is a vast and empty plain, pawns gain importance as they may promote, and – finally – the king abandons its safe place to become more active. To get involved in the game. To get involved in life.
Not every game of chess reaches its endgame.
Fruit flies exist for ten days, sparrows for two years, snails for eight years, and bowhead whale over 200 years. Every ten years our chance of death doubles. We have an awful lot of time to think about what happens afterwards. Until we don’t.