Tuesday, April 21, 2009

No Need for Fear - You Are Not Alone

If I were to name a theme for this blog it would be this: "Everything is connected, nothing lasts, and you are not alone." I would also say this is a simple explanation of what Buddhism teaches.

Fear of death, fear of change, or just the fear of getting old is a common source of anxiety for many. How do we accept the inevitable?

First of all, by knowing that your physical body is not who you ultimately are is a liberating experience. When you turn inward, practice being in the moment of now, notice there are no problems in the stillness of now. Why is that? Because only now is where you find God, or you can use the words the Source, or Consciousness, or Awareness. You can call it any of these. They are just words I use to try to convey something that is actually impossible to express with words or ideas. Only by experiencing this moment of now,(which is all there ever is anyhow) and being the awareness to it, will you KNOW God. Be still and KNOW. Watch the thoughts and emotions float in and out of your mind, like soft clouds going by. You are not that. Feel your body, follow your breath. You are not that. Who is doing the noticing, the witnessing, and who is aware? Who is the Awareness? Isn't it who you are?

Fear of aging and dying comes from when we are attached to the "maya", or the illusion, of a false world and think that our body and thoughts are real. The body, thoughts and emotions, all of these forms, will perish, and they ARE perishing, in fact, every moment without you noticing any of it. So how can forms that are changing constantly and disappearing every moment be REAL? What is it that is REAL?

When we come to terms with radical impermanence, and turn the sorrows of that insight into joy and contentment, we will live in and on each moment.

Turn inward and there lies the peace that every living being desires.


wolfie185 said...

Hi Diane
Thanks for the nice comment. I like what you have written as well, good stuff, anytime someone talks positively about or quote Thich Nhat Hanh I respect them, he is such a great teacher. Interdependence is something I am constantly trying to be more aware which in turn leads me to non-self. I am a baby at Buddhism and unfortunately there isn’t a Sangha in central Nebraska but I did find out about a new one starting in Lincoln which is only 2 hours away so maybe I can start spending 1 Saturday a month learning more about the Dharma and meditation. Most of my education so far has been via books by Thich, the Dalai Lama, my first book was by Steve Hagan who introduced living in “this moment” to me and constant change such as you wrote about, the web has also been a great learning tool. Tara Brach wrote a great book called Radical Acceptance which I have passed on to a couple of people in recovery. Currently I am reading “One Breath at a Time, Buddhism and the 12 Steps” by Kevin Griffin, it has really be an enlightening book for me, read 1 other on the same topic but most of what the author wrote about I was already using, Kevin has helped me a great deal with understanding the use of a Higher Power from a Buddhist prospective, he uses the Dharma which makes sense to me. I have always believe in some Divine Creator one who created all that is living, I just can’t believe in a Master Puppeteer controlling us and answering our whims. It has taken a bit to accept the God is within us idea but I am getting there, a lot of this comes from years of AA and the passages and sayings about how we are not God and we need to stop playing God, for me I have come to understand that yes God is within and as long as I am humble and follow the path of loving kindness, compassion, interdependence and non-permanence, that by living as a humble servant then I am not at risk of playing God. This is one of those things that is left unsaid at meetings and only shared with those that have ears open enough to hear.
I look forward to reading your future post and those of your husband. I noticed you follow Brother Pete, we have become blogger friends supporting each other, Zen-the Possible Way is another favorite of mine, someone who I really like and post almost every day is Ox Herding http://www.oxherding.com/my_weblog/ .



Didymus Thomas said...

I think one of the challenges of this is truly knowing this stuff. I heard a speaker share an insight to live with those around you as if they were dying tonight. Kinda brings you right into that present moment with them.

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One day life no longer made any sense. I began enquiring, "Who am I", What am I", and "What's the purpose of this life?"


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