I have a birthday coming up next month. Every once in a while (and increasingly in recent years) I have wondered how many people have died since I was born.

WikiAnswers says that roughly 150,000 people die each day. Assuming a constant percentage of people die given a population (this is untrue because of increasing lifespans and does not consider epidemics and wars - although the last two will not affect the final number significantly) and assuming that the function of people dieing each year can be represented linearly (also incorrect) I derive the following equation for the number of deaths per day by year since I was born:

y = 1590.3x - 3,046,503

Then summing from my birth year to this year and multiplying every year result by 365 I get 2,125,864,320 people. This is definitely a correct ballpark figure given the incorrect but workable assumptions (when I integrate I get 2.3 billion people). There were only about 2.76 billion people on Earth when I was born.

Now one of these years I will also be added to that total. But in the meantime, I will dedicate my birthdays to praying for all those people, each of whom was loved and was missed by some other being.

May all those people and may all beings everywhere be reborn in the Pure Lands when this life's vision ends.

OM MANI PEDME HUNG

OM AMI DEWA HRIH

THADYATA OM BEYKANZE BEYKANZE MAHABEYKANZE BEYKANZE RAJA SAMUGATE SOHA

Kirt