12 August 2011

How Great Beings Die

A sangha member died this week.

The account his daughter gave was nothing short of inspiring.  He had mentioned some wishes for his memorial service a week and a half earlier.  Although the dying had its trials, he never complained of pain.  Then, surrounded by a circle of family and friends drumming and playing the didjeridoo in the evening, expressing his appreciation and pleasure, his heart rate slowed and he passed peacefully a few hours later.

I am grateful for this demonstration of the spirit of Dae E's "Vow for Awakening":
Our only prayer is to be firm in our determination to give ourselves completely to the Buddha's Way, so that no doubts arise however long the road seems to be; to be light and easy in the four parts of the body; to be strong and undismayed in body and in mind; to be free from illness and drive out both depressed feelings and distraction; to be free from calamity, misfortune, harmful influences and obstructions; not to seek the Truth outside of ourselves, so we may instantly enter the right way; to be unattached to all thoughts that we may reach the perfectly clear bright mind of Prajñā and have immediate enlightenment on the Great Matter. Thereby we receive the transmission of the deep wisdom of the Buddhas to save all sentient beings who suffer in the round of birth and death. In this way we offer our gratitude for the compassion of the Buddhas and the Patriarchs.

Our further prayer is not to be extremely ill or to be suffering at the time of departure, to know its coming seven days ahead so that we can quiet the mind to abandon the body and be unattached to all things at the last moment wherein we return to the Original Mind in the realm of no birth and no death and merge infinitely into the whole universe to manifest as all things in their True Nature and with the great wisdom of the Buddhas to awaken all beings to the Buddha Mind.

We offer this to all Buddhas and Bodhisattva-Mahāsattvas of the past, present, and future in the ten quarters and to the Mahā Prajñā Pāramitā.
We're all headed on.  The issue isn't whether or when, but how.

Thanks, Mike. 

No comments:

Post a Comment