August 14, 2022

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The Tragedy & Liberation of Death – zen habits


By Leo Babauta

Last week, my brother was hit by an unimaginable tragedy: he misplaced his 3-month-old child Tyler.

I’m nonetheless in shock and heartbreak, coming to phrases with it. My coronary heart is damaged for him, for all of our household, and for this horrible loss.

I didn’t know Tyler, however as I start to course of this loss, I begin to really feel the lack of the long run we gained’t get to have collectively. Playing collectively, studying to him, using bikes, throwing a ball round, having uncle-nephew talks out in nature. Celebrating his victories and his life. I mourn the nephew I didn’t get to have.

And in fact, it makes me respect the nephews and neices I do have. I’ve been considering of all of them, grateful that I’ve gotten so many good moments with all of them. Tyler will probably be in my coronary heart every time I get the reward of one other second with a cherished one.

This sudden loss has gotten me to face my very own loss of life this week. I do know it’s coming, simply not when. I hardly ever give it some thought, as a result of life is so in-my-face, nevertheless it’s there, ready. Tyler’s loss of life is such a stark reminder that we by no means understand how a lot time we have now left.

I’ve been considering this quote from a revered Zen trainer:

“From the perspective of many wisdom traditions death is seen as the ultimate moment for the complete liberation of the mind from all entanglements, all sorrows and all separateness.” ~Joan Halifax

And there’s something liberating about this for me.

When I die, I’ll now not think about myself as separate from the world.

I’ll now not think about that I’m by some means insufficient. Nor fear about all of the fears that come from that concept of inadequacy.

At the second of loss of life, I’ll all of a sudden now not attempt to management others, or burden myself with my judgments of others.

This is indeniable. And if it’s true … why can’t I simply let go of these issues proper now? Why waste time with making an attempt to regulate or choose others, with worrying about whether or not I’m insufficient, with insisting on my separation from every little thing else? It all takes a lot power.

Why not simply free myself of this stuff as we speak, as an alternative of ready for the second of loss of life?

When I’ve been considering loss of life this week … this liberation has really occurred for me.

What a second of full freedom and joyfulness!

Thank you Tyler. I like you and can maintain you in my coronary heart.



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