These are five insights attributed to the Buddha. He presented them to all people for contemplation that leads to the abandonment of unhealthy attachments and actions and to the cultivation of the conditions necessary for Awakening.
Buddha said he only taught one thing his whole life: the way toward the cessation of suffering. So this teaching in no different.
Contemplation of these five insights are helpful for nearly all people, whether Buddhist, Christian, non-religious, male, female and so on.
Like most core Buddhist teachings, they ring clear as self-evident, yet in their simplicity they strike a strong chord of truth in the heart. May you contemplate them for your own relief of suffering whoever you are.
The Five Remembrances
I am of the nature to grow old;
There is no way to escape growing old.
I am of the nature to have ill health;
There is no way to escape ill health.
I am of the nature to die;
There is no way to escape death.
All that is dear to me and everyone I love
are of the nature to change;
There is no way to escape
being separated from them.
My actions are my only true belongings.
I cannot escape the consequences of my actions.
My actions are the ground upon which I stand.
Anguttara Nikaya 5.57 (Translation by Thich Nhat Hanh)
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged actions, AN 5.57, Anguttara Nikaya, death, deeds, Five Remembrances, illness, loss, old age | 1 Comment »
At first encounter, mountains do not speak.
With calm observation amidst the mountains,
after many day, they start to whisper.
They abide forever, seeing the 10,000 things.
Their peaks are regular friends with the clouds.
Eternal, because they are still.
We humans scurry about below them, sometimes walking among them.
Knowing more than even ancient trees, they are supreme.
Yet common water, drop by drop wears them down, melting them into the rivers and sea.
All things linked together. All beings from non-beings.
All one same person.
After true sight, the mountains are silent again. Yet so are the rivers and people themselves.
Words without meaning.
Sounds, and being fully expressed as always.
Even you are the very mountain!
Cease with words.
They will never mean more than the sound, and even then for but a short time.
They will melt into the sea of Reality.
As the mountain, you are silent.
As the water you shall conquer yourself.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged mountains speak, Zen poem | 2 Comments »
My sword leans against the sky.
With its polished blade I’ll behead
The Buddha and all of his saints.
Let the lightning strike where it will.
~Shumpo Soki (1496)
After reciting this poem, Shumpo gave a “laugh of derision” and died. What this all means is he was stating his independence from religious tradition and false notions. Also, his declaration of defiance and bravery while facing death. Lightning was thought to punish those who defy gods or celestial beings. Shumpo dies brave and free. The spiritual warrior’s death.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged Shumpo Soki, spiritual warrior, Zen, zen death poem | 2 Comments »
“The pine tree seems to listen, the fir tree, to wait: and without impatience they give no thought to the little people beneath them devoured by their impatience and their curiosity.”
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged curiosity, fir, impatience, Nietzsche, pine | Leave a Comment »
What is a “Zen Birthday?”
On our birthday, we and others focus on us. The person they imagine we are. The person we think we are.
Who are we though? What, really, are we celebrating?
If we feel loved, we may feel happy on our birthday. We also could feel sad if we don’t feel remembered or given a present by someone.
Notice how all this revolves around the notion, the thought, of self. Without that, where is sorrow or elation?
No self, no problem. All our internal angst arises from the perspective of self.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged no self, suffering, Zen birthday | Leave a Comment »
Being of Saami heritage, I would like to encourage all those in Scandinavia and Sampmi to be a voice for Canada’s indigenous people’s currently facing serious oppression. Our bonds and struggles are very similar, and our fates intertwined. Tweet, blog and post #idlenomore where you can. Also see YouTube to see what’s happening now!
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged #idlenomore, American Indian, C-45, First Nation, Lapp, Native American, Saami, Sami | Leave a Comment »