Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse, author of What makes you not a Buddhist, has really managed to clarify for me what makes me not a Buddhist, and consequently, what would make me a Buddhist. I appreciate his take on this, and the book, short and easy-read that it is, is very informative and to-the-point.
If you do not accept these four truths, you would not be a Buddhist.
If you do, well, then… you are?!
”The recognition of impermanence is the key to freedom from fear of remaining forever stuck in a situation, habit, or pattern.”
Finished reading the book, and the morning after, was sent day 19 of the 21 days of Abundance-meditation by the (Deepak) Chopra Center. And funnily enough, the exercise for the day, attached to the meditation, centers around the parable of This too shall pass.
And I have to say, in my ever-deepening knowing of this, through and through, I find life more enjoyable to life. The high’s. The low’s. The nothing-much-is-happening-at-all’s. All of it.
”[…] when we remember that things are impermanent, we are less likely to be enslaved by assumptions, rigid beliefs (both religious and secular), value systems, or blind faith. Such awareness prevents us from getting caught up in all kinds of personal, political, and relationship dramas. We begin to know that things are not entirely under our control and never will be, so there is no expectation for things to go according to our hopes and fears.”
This is right up my alley, and something that greatly helps me in life. But no. I don’t see myself as a Buddhist, nor do I have any desire too. But I also want to clarify that in no way, does this mean that I don’t feel. That I don’t cry tears of despair as well as tears of the utmost joy.
I do. And I want to.
In no way do I want to go through life numb.
But knowing that whatever is, is right now and not forever, makes it easier to feel in the now, and not fall down the rabbit hole (at least not as often, as long, or as easily) of getting stuck in remembrance of feeling into what was, or imagining what might be.
Being here. Now.
Knowing nothing lasts forever.
Recognizing the instability of causes and conditions leads us to understand our own power to transform obstacles and make the impossible possible. This is true in every area of life.