Meditation on impermanence

Whether you're exploring Buddhism for the first time or you're already on the path, feel free to ask questions of any kind here.

Meditation on impermanence

Postby Aemilius » Wed Jun 13, 2012 11:38 am

In Ordinary Ngondro we have the topic of impermanence, in it there is the subtopic of impermanence of the outer world, meaning impermanence of Earth, impermanence of the Solar System and of the Milkyway Galaxy. Study of geology is essential to get anywhere in the understanding of impermanence of Earth. Especially useful are Plate Tectonics, and how rocks and mountains are slowly formed, and how they then slowly wear away completely. It is very rewarding, it gives you a deep sense of impermanence, when you start to fathom it. The earth we walk upon is not as solid as it seems, it changes and moves very slowly but continuously. You must study and meditate on it long enough to get a real sense of impermanence of Planet Earth and its continents, its mountains and its rivers. This leads further on to the formation and impermanence of the solar system and to the formation and impermanence of stars/suns and of galaxies.
svaha
User avatar
Aemilius
 
Posts: 1504
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:44 am

Re: Meditation on impermanence

Postby Wesley1982 » Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:17 pm

Like something out of a Riddick Bowe movie? ;)
User avatar
Wesley1982
 
Posts: 739
Joined: Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:45 pm
Location: Magga ~ Path to Liberation.

Re: Meditation on impermanence

Postby Andrew108 » Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:21 pm

Wesley1982 wrote:Like something out of a Riddick Bowe movie? ;)

Isn't Riddick Bowe a boxer?

To the OP how fast is impermanence?
The Blessed One said:

"What is the All? Simply the eye & forms, ear & sounds, nose & aromas, tongue & flavors, body & tactile sensations, intellect & ideas. This, monks, is called the All. Anyone who would say, 'Repudiating this All, I will describe another,' if questioned on what exactly might be the grounds for his statement, would be unable to explain, and furthermore, would be put to grief. Why? Because it lies beyond range." Sabba Sutta.
Andrew108
 
Posts: 1502
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2011 7:41 pm

Re: Meditation on impermanence

Postby Wesley1982 » Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:23 pm

Andrew108 wrote:
Wesley1982 wrote:Like something out of a Riddick Bowe movie? ;)

Isn't Riddick Bowe a boxer?


No, its a space-oriented action/sci-fi movie.
User avatar
Wesley1982
 
Posts: 739
Joined: Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:45 pm
Location: Magga ~ Path to Liberation.

Re: Meditation on impermanence

Postby Wesley1982 » Thu Jun 14, 2012 5:28 pm

Actually, the DVD series says Chronicles of Riddick not the boxer. hmm
User avatar
Wesley1982
 
Posts: 739
Joined: Thu Mar 29, 2012 9:45 pm
Location: Magga ~ Path to Liberation.

Re: Meditation on impermanence

Postby Bonsai Doug » Thu Jun 14, 2012 8:04 pm

Riddick Bowe is indeed a boxer. "Richard B. Riddick," or simply "Riddick,"
is a scyfi character played by Vin Diesel in, I believe, a total of three movies.
Now having obtained a precious human body,
I do not have the luxury of remaining on a distracted path.

~ Tibetan Book of the Dead
User avatar
Bonsai Doug
 
Posts: 64
Joined: Fri Jun 24, 2011 3:08 pm

Re: Meditation on impermanence

Postby Aemilius » Fri Jun 15, 2012 1:34 pm

Another aspect of impermanence is ageing, i.e. becoming old. In it several things happen to you, things that you never understood before. Awareness of impermanence is a state of mind, it is not morbid nor pessimistic, it is difficult to describe. You should not escape from the experience of impermanence into belief in a supreme being or in an eternal soul, nor into nihilism. It is difficult to attain, difficult to maintain. You should first be calm and peaceful, before taking up the meditation on impermanence.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ageing
svaha
User avatar
Aemilius
 
Posts: 1504
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:44 am

Re: Meditation on impermanence

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Jun 15, 2012 1:49 pm

Meditation on impermanence has a clear purpose. We don't need to over complicate things.
We spend a lot of time attached to things that will change or disappear. Then, when such happens, we suffer.
Let me give a few examples:
If we base our happiness in our beauty, it will vanish.
If we cling to our relations, they will end.
If we cling to money, it will never be enough to buy everything we want and we will lose it all when we die.
If we cling to this self, it will too disappear.
Whatever entity we may take as permanent will be shown impermanent. So if we deposit our happiness in it, when it disappears, so will our happiness.
Look at a beautiful fresh apple. Think of it as your happiness when you cling to things. Then watch it rot. That's what happens to our happiness if it is dependent of it.
You better eat the apple and not let your happiness depend on it. Enjoy it while it lasts and then release any clinging.
It's important to know that meditation on impermanence doesn't stand alone. There are other teachings explaining how you get rid of the causes of suffering. They all point to the fact that in the end it is a mistaken apprehension of reality and its ramifications that lead to suffering.
User avatar
Dechen Norbu
 
Posts: 2798
Joined: Sat Mar 26, 2011 6:50 pm

Re: Meditation on impermanence

Postby Aemilius » Mon Jun 25, 2012 10:31 am

There are different levels in the meditation on impermanence. The first one is a spur to spiritual practice, a cause for not postponing it into indefinite future.
The second one is more subtle, it means that seeing impermanence is the essence of Dharma.
There are different types of people. According to the Sravakayana teaching some people realize selflessness, some realize impermanence, and some realize the suffering nature of existence. It depends on your mental and spiritual type, your constitution so to speak.
Realization of Earth and the Universe as impermanent is intended here. It is a profound subject for meditation.
svaha
User avatar
Aemilius
 
Posts: 1504
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:44 am


Return to Exploring Buddhism

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 9 guests

>