the matter of life and death

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the matter of life and death

Postby padma norbu » Sat Mar 17, 2012 3:30 pm

Does it matter? Do you care that you're alive? Was the idea that nirvana "snuffs the flame" ever appealing to you because you might have kind of a Freudian death-wish?
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby Jikan » Sat Mar 17, 2012 3:33 pm

padma norbu wrote:Does it matter? Do you care that you're alive? Was the idea that nirvana "snuffs the flame" ever appealing to you because you might have kind of a Freudian death-wish?


I'm happy to be alive and have been for a while, because I'm happy to have another day to practice more and to be with the people who I get to see. It sounds corny, but it's true. I get a lot of pleasure and joy out of getting up in the morning.

I've never been able to wrap my mind around the appeal of nirvana as analogous to "fire unbound." I'm more interested in continuities. There have been times, though, when I've felt very deep despair and contemplated whether or not it was worthwhile to carry on living. Doing better in recent years.

How are you doing, padma norbu? How do you feel about it?
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby padma norbu » Sat Mar 17, 2012 3:53 pm

Jikan wrote:
padma norbu wrote:Does it matter? Do you care that you're alive? Was the idea that nirvana "snuffs the flame" ever appealing to you because you might have kind of a Freudian death-wish?


I'm happy to be alive and have been for a while, because I'm happy to have another day to practice more and to be with the people who I get to see. It sounds corny, but it's true. I get a lot of pleasure and joy out of getting up in the morning.

I've never been able to wrap my mind around the appeal of nirvana as analogous to "fire unbound." I'm more interested in continuities. There have been times, though, when I've felt very deep despair and contemplated whether or not it was worthwhile to carry on living. Doing better in recent years.

How are you doing, padma norbu? How do you feel about it?


You pretty much summed up my thoughts. I've come to the conclusion that the only solution to this predicament is 24-7 practice, which makes sense when you consider the fact that all serious practitioners seem to be doing that. The only thing I like to do anymore is have fun with friends, which happens more infrequently these days and there's always some communication problems that creep in and ruin a good time for me. If there was a button I could push that simply wiped out all trace of my existence permanently and forever, I would push it without hesitation. The deathless state of the Buddhas is probably not exactly what I'm thinking of, but close enough and the best option given the situation, it seems.

Sadly, I am just a bad practitioner. Maybe somehow I will get better soon. I am really hoping so... It is really quite amazing, but the older I get, the more I realize that I simply can't make myself do anything anymore. I don't know how I got this way. It's weird. I can only perform under duress. Hopefully, I will be given a definitive death sentence one day like "you have just three months to live" and I'll go HOLY CRAP, I need to spend that 3 months in retreat! Dharma practice under duress seems like it might be difficult, but maybe not. Maybe I'd feel like there are no more distractions. Then again, maybe I will be distracted by profound sadness of all the things I took for granted that now suddenly seem awesome. Like how I currently feel about childhood: back then I thought I couldn't wait to be an adult so nobody can tell me what to do (LOL, kids) and now I'm like, "you know... being a kid would be great! If I could do it all over..." Strangely paradoxical feelings about life and death, I guess.
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby ram peswani » Sat Mar 17, 2012 4:10 pm

padma norbu wrote:Does it matter? Do you care that you're alive? Was the idea that nirvana "snuffs the flame" ever appealing to you because you might have kind of a Freudian death-wish?




Every one has three choices and one can select any of these.

1. Disintegration.... when time comes which is not in one's hand one disintegrates after fighting for survival for many births.One leaves behind nothing.

2. Moksh/ Arhat.....One has time in his hand, to select the time of one's disintegration but with effort. One leaves behind nothing.

3.Nirvan...........One has time in his hand, to select the time of one's disintegration with heavy effort.One leaves behind an ever lasting splended base for others to build upon. And coming generations for ever and ever can enjoy the benefits in that splended base.

Death or disintegration is unavoidable, one selects the path as per one's deep hidden nature. You can call it death wish but is it?

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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby padma norbu » Sat Mar 17, 2012 4:22 pm

ram peswani wrote:Every one has three choices and one can select any of these.

1. Disintegration.... when time comes which is not in one's hand one disintegrates after fighting for survival for many births.One leaves behind nothing.

2. Moksh/ Arhat.....One has time in his hand, to select the time of one's disintegration but with effort. One leaves behind nothing.

3.Nirvan...........One has time in his hand, to select the time of one's disintegration with heavy effort. One leaves behind an ever lasting splended base for others to build upon. And coming generations for ever and ever can enjoy the benefits in that splended base.

Death or disintegration is unavoidable, one selects the path as per one's deep hidden nature. You can call it death wish but is it?

ram


I'm afraid I don't understand any of that.
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby ground » Sun Mar 18, 2012 5:16 am

padma norbu wrote:Does it matter? Do you care that you're alive?

For the "you" it may matter.

padma norbu wrote:Was the idea that nirvana "snuffs the flame" ever appealing to you because you might have kind of a Freudian death-wish?

If something appeals then something appeals to the "you" and such kind of thinking as manifested by the quoted is "you's" artifice of "you" survival.

Kind regards
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby LastLegend » Sun Mar 18, 2012 10:28 am

I am happy to be alive and I am afraid of death.
NAMO AMITABHA
NAM MO A DI DA PHAT (VIETNAMESE)
NAMO AMITUOFO (CHINESE)
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby muni » Sun Mar 18, 2012 2:00 pm

The Buddha his protecting hand up, palm toward us. Don't fear. :buddha1:

Sometimes i see so: we are vast sky like mind, this life/body is a passing cloud/season in it. All is fine.
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby Fa Dao » Sun Mar 18, 2012 4:07 pm

Padma Norbu,
sitting on a cushion "practicing" all day every day and thinking you are a "bad" practitioner because you dont do that doesnt get you anywhere. That little voice in your head telling you all of this and torturing you is not your friend. Just keep it simple and real. Do like Rinpoche says..."Relax, be Present, do Guruyoga". Do that throughout your day in a relaxed unhurried informal way along with a little "formal" practice of whatever secondary practice is needed to help you do the former.
"But if you know how to observe yourself, you will discover your real nature, the primordial state, the state of Guruyoga, and then all will become clear because you will have discovered everything"-Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby duckfiasco » Sun Mar 18, 2012 4:51 pm

It is really quite amazing, but the older I get, the more I realize that I simply can't make myself do anything anymore.

Congratulations. You've made the important realization that practice isn't a self-improvement project. What self is there to improve anyway? :cheers:

I also beat myself up sometimes about not being a "good practitioner". I can't even still my mind for one measly second when I meditate, let alone ten or fifteen minutes. Habits we've built up our whole lives are very tenacious. The point is more to look at this experience of resistance, of constant doing, instead of just giving in like we always do. Just be with it, in gentleness and curiosity. If anything ever feels like a big deal, remember it's the self that loves big, important deals that center around it. Whose big deal? Whose enlightenment? Relax and have fun! You already have everything you need :twothumbsup: :thumbsup: :hi:

Hope this wasn't too off-topic!
Please take the above post with a grain of salt.
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby Jesse » Sun Mar 18, 2012 5:39 pm

Have a cup of tea :smile:
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby maybay » Sun Mar 18, 2012 6:16 pm

padma norbu wrote:Does it matter? Do you care that you're alive?

Whenever I ask that question I think no. But acting on such an overestimation, thinking I'm truly beyond all of this, is a difficult path to go back on, and this life is too precious to even consider cashing in my chips before I've put in due effort. I've done my homework on this.

For many reasons I think its better to encourage conservatism and ignore such questions. And if these doubts should become forceful and gatecrash themselves into your attention, humor them with poetry and the like.

"When my love swears that she is made of truth, I do believe her, though I know she lies."
People will know nothing and everything
Remember nothing and everything
Think nothing and everything
Do nothing and everything
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby alpha » Tue Mar 20, 2012 12:31 pm

There is a lie which we never seem to see or uncover.
The lie of doing ,of wanting to be or become something.

Personally theses days i am a bit better to catch the lie in the process and stop to look at the one who's lying or the lie itself because they are one and the same.

This "becoming something good or worthy"is just not it.How could it be ?Its just a veil..
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby padma norbu » Tue Mar 20, 2012 10:14 pm

alpha wrote:There is a lie which we never seem to see or uncover.
The lie of doing ,of wanting to be or become something.

Personally theses days i am a bit better to catch the lie in the process and stop to look at the one who's lying or the lie itself because they are one and the same.

This "becoming something good or worthy"is just not it.How could it be ?Its just a veil..


Fortunately, I don't have that problem.
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby In the bone yard » Tue Mar 20, 2012 10:48 pm

Sir,

If you die you won't be able to help us any longer or any animals.
The joy from seeing such compassion arising from your post.

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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby padma norbu » Tue Mar 20, 2012 11:43 pm

In the bone yard wrote:Sir,

If you die you won't be able to help us any longer or any animals.
The joy from seeing such compassion arising from your post.

:group:


Eh... what does it matter?
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby Josef » Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:14 am

padma norbu wrote:Does it matter? Do you care that you're alive? Was the idea that nirvana "snuffs the flame" ever appealing to you because you might have kind of a Freudian death-wish?


Rigdzin Changchub Dorje.

nuff said.
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby padma norbu » Wed Mar 21, 2012 1:12 am

Nangwa wrote:
padma norbu wrote:Does it matter? Do you care that you're alive? Was the idea that nirvana "snuffs the flame" ever appealing to you because you might have kind of a Freudian death-wish?


Rigdzin Changchub Dorje.

nuff said.


guess I have to go a-Googling now, Mr. Succinct.
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby Josef » Wed Mar 21, 2012 1:15 am

padma norbu wrote:guess I have to go a-Googling now, Mr. Succinct.


:smile:
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Re: the matter of life and death

Postby padma norbu » Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:31 am

Hey, check out Freud's sofa... couple Buddha heads in the background. Looks like a mess to lay on, though. Too much for me.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Freud_Sofa.JPG
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