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The Buddha at Work's "Working for the Weekend" quote for 8/20/10

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"By contemplating the preciousness of human life, the law of karma, the suffering of samsara, the truth of impermanence, and the compassion and wisdom that are true freedom, we learn to think accurately. We usually don't pay attention to these truths until our expectations about life are interrupted by aches in our body or lines on our face, an accident, or the illness or death of somebody close to us. Then we experience a moment of panic that temporarily cuts through drip, our web of habitual assumptions. We don't want to dwell in that open space, so our next move is usually to find a way back to the false security of 'me.' We don't think 'Life is precious. I'd better start helping others.' We just go back to pursuing pleasure or not rocking the boat. Thinking we have all the time in the world, we waste it. Our decisions are based on inaccurate information rooted in hope. We are lazy and unfocused, which corrupts our behavior and evenually leads to regret.

It's never too late to change our mind, but when we find ourselves on our deathbed, it's too late to change our life. Reflecting back, we wish we had taken notice and done something more meaningful. When I meet with people who are dying, this is the overriding message I hear. Some are afraid of dying and others are not, but most people wish they had noticed earlier how precious life was; most people wish they had used it better. Most people wish they had been kinder to others, loved others more. Nobody says, 'If only I had been jealous and angry more often.'"

Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche - Ruling Your World

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Comments

Live for Today

It is an interesting conversation piece to talk about what is considered a meaningful life. People will natually have their opinions of what is meant by this term.  I feel that it is never too late to start having a meaningful life, based on one's own definition, it begins at this very moment.    Regrets of not doing enough in the past are not going to provide anyone with any benefit.  I don't believe in looking at the past and wondering what I could have done differently to add meaning to my life.  This, for me, is a mispent use of the energy that is afforded to me each day I am fortunate enough to awaken and open my eyes.  The only things that are in our power is to be kinder to the next person we meet.  To show and tell those people we love that we love them the next time we see them. 

There is nothing to fear in death, it is simply a part of life.  Even on our deathbed, it is not too late to have a meaningful life with what time is left.  There is not a way to go back and change the past, and so it is not productive to our peace to rehash or regret what we have done.  It is only possible for one to provide meaning to everything they do from here on out. 

Great post, thank you. Namaste. 

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