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Impermanence

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This topic contains 2 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  anita 6 months, 1 week ago.

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  • #181963

    bill
    Participant

    I am increasingly aware of how we make plans, dream of our goals, trying to build meaning for our lives yet, the world is really completely out of our control in many ways and, increasingly, way too much of an overload for many people. Even with discipline, it is only possible to accomplish so much. I am seeing the analogy of a craftsman working on a project and having to abandon it in the middle of a natural disaster. Maybe it is washed away. Somewhere, an incomplete masterpiece will be found by someone. Yet he/she will have to start again from scratch.

    Modern life is even worse, in this way, than normal life in the past. It is very crazy. It is full of stresses, demands, messiness, wasted efforts. Those of us who are lucky enough to have a roof over our heads and food will tend to worry about our regrets, failings, shortcomings, etc. I'm very aware of this right now when I feel the bone-chilling cold here on the East Coast and think about the homeless.

    I thought of all the requirements we put on our lives because we value them and do not want to waste them. At first, this impulse seems good. I have dedicated myself to nonprofit work for this reason. Yet, aging, limitation, death come all too soon and it is not easy to avoid regret. When all is swept away by this great wave, why did we invest so much in this? That is my question. Is it too radical to ask if perhaps we should expect absolutely nothing and if, in doing so, we are inevitably not going to strive as hard, but perhaps that is taking it too far.

    #182019

    Peter
    Participant

    “Is it too radical to ask if perhaps we should expect absolutely nothing and if, in doing so, we are inevitably not going to strive as hard, but perhaps that is taking it too far.”

    Great question. I have always felt that a problem with Buddhism was that when you learn to accept life as it is, (accepting that nothing is either good or bad and that all labeling is unskillful…) that there was a loss of energy to work toward outer change.  That is of course not the intention but a trap many who practice fall into.

    How do you say Yes to Life as it is, even Yes to what you may not like, and still continue to stand and act for what you feel/think is the good? Act out your truth

    You continue to act with the expectation of nothing because how things turn out is not a concern for those that act on what they feel/think is the good, open to learning better to do better. It is enough being authentic to the Self without having to measure the outcome.  We do not create meaning, we become meaning.

    There is a Hermetic Riddle As above so below as below so above. We are influenced and we influence. Though we may not be in control of change we are co-creators. Who we are does play a role in the world we experience and create, for ourselves and others, its just not in ways easily measurable. (Especially if we demand the outcome of change to be only that which we desire it to be. It is said that ‘Man is the measure of all things’. That may or may not be so however, what is true is that we really suck at measuring our experiences.)

    “The Riddle” – Five For Fighting Lyrics
    There was a man back in '95
    Whose heart ran out of summers
    But before he died, I asked him
    Wait, what's the sense in life
    Come over me, Come over me
    He said,
    Son why you got to sing that tune
    Catch a Dylan song or some eclipse of the moon
    Let an angel swing and make you swoon
    Then you will see… You will see
    Then he said,
    Here's a riddle for you
    Find the Answer
    There's a reason for the world
    You and I…
    Picked up my kid from school today
    Did you learn anything cause in the world today
    You can't live in a castle far away
    Now talk to me, come talk to me
    He said,
    Dad I'm big but we're smaller than small
    In the scheme of things, well we're nothing at all
    Still every mother's child sings a lonely song
    So play with me, come play with me
    And Hey Dad
    Here's a riddle for you
    Find the Answer
    There's a reason for the world
    You and I…
    I said,
    Son for all I've told you
    When you get right down to the
    Reason for the world…
    Who am I?
    There are secrets that we still have left to find
    There have been mysteries from the beginning of time
    There are answers we're not wise enough to see
    He said… You looking for a clue I Love You free
    The batter swings and the summer flies
    As I look into my angel's eyes
    A song plays on while the moon is high over me
    Something comes over me
    I guess we're big and I guess we're small
    If you think about it man you know we got it all
    Cause we're all we got on this bouncing ball
    And I love you free
    I love you freely
    Here's a riddle for you
    Find the Answer
    There's a reason for the world
    You and I…

     

    • This reply was modified 6 months, 1 week ago by  Peter.
    #182131

    anita
    Participant

    Dear bill:

    You wrote: “When all is swept away by this great wave, why did we invest so much in this?”

    My answer: for the same reason any other living thing, plant, and animal invests. We are born that way, to invest, just as we are born to die. I think that it is when we think of ourselves as gods, we think that what we do should last forevermore.

    But when we think of ourselves as animals, whatever we achieve at any one time, will be washed away by this great wave. No different from ants building their nest, the nest washed away in the rain, and the ants building a new nest immediately, not regretting their old nest. Investing yet again.

    anita

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