12 Dec 2010

Deaths, funerals and hospitals..

Been a lot of this.  Yesterday a Buddhist funeral,  cutting away the strings of attachment to this world.  Today a hospital visit due to a big ole gash in my finger.   Death all around, especially my good friends sister.  And then Grimmly's posts, all a good reminder of what it's all about.  Hearing and seeing the suffering of the physical body, seeing your own flesh without it's skin.  Food for thought and practice becomes more serious. 

Once again reading the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying.  First read in March 1998 Dharmsala...  It opened my eyes and got me started. 

Here are some of the things that my 21year old self underlined. 

"They have marvelous houses for the dead corpses.  But haven't you noticed?  They have such wonderful houses for the living corpses too."

"Our lives are monotonous, petty, and repetitive,  wasted in the pursuit of the trivial, because we seem to know of nothing better."

"it reminds us that we are only travelers, taking temporary refuge in this life and this body."

"Tomorrow or the next life - which comes first, we never know."

"Our task is to strike a balance, to find a middle way, to learn not to overstretch ourselves with extraneous activities and preoccupations, but to simplify our lives more and more.  The key to finding a happy balance in modern lives is simplicty."

"To enter the transforming field of that much vaster vision is to learn how to be at home in change, and how to make impermanence our friend."

"When through contemplation we really have seen the emptiness and interdependence of all things and ourselves, the world is revealed in a brighter, fresher, more sparkling light"

"Our deepest fears are like dragons gaurding our deepest treasure"

"We are terrified to look inward, because our culture has given us no idea of what we will find.  We may even think that if we do we will be in danger of madness.  This is one of the last and most resourceful ploys of ego to prevent us discovering our real nature."

"We are all already essentially perfect."

It is indeed the season for introspection, reflection and so I shall contine simplfying and organising my disorderly house and mind.  Dug up this old photo taken whilst reading the book sat on a rock in Bhagsu, thinking about how far I've come since those first angsty days.  Or rather than how far, travelling in ever decreasing circles, spiralling towards the centre...

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