What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath of a buffalo in the winter time. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset. – Crowfoot, April 1980, on his deathbed.
I have been waylaid for more than a month. First, my back took a u-turn. Then, a virus invaded my respiratory system. To protect me, my brilliant body created copious amounts of phlegm and its counterpart, the unending hacking cough. In her thoughtful hypervigilance, she seems to have forgotten to turn these off.
Life narrowed to bursts of work alternated with rest and multicolored moments of presence, embracing whatever happened to appear.
All this distress, and the temptation to wish it wasn’t so, made me wonder why we strive so eagerly for the illusion of a permanent happiness as if we actually have control. Life unfolds our past karma – the result of our very own thoughts, words, and deeds – and so we never know what will come next until it surprisingly appears. It might be joy or sorrow. It could be wellness or pain. Even death could unexpectedly follow this particular instant.
Don’t Wait for Happiness
Please don’t wait for happiness or imagine it’s right around the corner. Instead, find nourishment and truth in whatever circumstances arise. What awaits this body is the discomfort of disease, old age, and death. The law of attraction people may decidedly protest, but have you ever seen anyone become immortal after reciting affirmations day in and day out?
When the time of death arrives, how exactly will this mind of mine respond? Will I open to death’s naked reality or pull away in attachment or fear? Will I rest in my heart or be embroiled in transitory thoughts and emotions that have little importance or reality? This illness told me there’s far more mind training to be done if I wish to live with awareness and recognize whatever appears as its magical display.
I know the state of my mind will be all that matters at that watershed moment as I step from this life into the uncertainty of the next stage. All the possessions I’ve accumulated and ordinary accomplishments will be left behind, irrelevant and meaningless like a handful of dust or a forgotten dream.
The change and uncertainty that occurs at death is mimicked constantly in each moment that passes by. Now’s the time to learn to be present and step into uncertainty with confidence and ease. Then death will be nothing to fear.
Life lives in tiny moments, which exist right now. When you die, will you have regrets because you didn’t live in this precious now?
Thank you for reading and sharing! If you liked this entry, please consider subscribing for free updates by email. With love, Sandra