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RedHouseHendrix

Have You Come Here to Die?

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Posted (edited)

Have You Come Here to Die?

A talk given by Ajahn Brahmavamso to the monks at Bodhinyana Monastery during the 2004 Rains Retreat

When we are meditating we often encounter our defilements, and this is one of the wonderful things about our rains retreat – there is no escape – or at least it is not easy to escape. You’d have to be pretty ingenious to find ways of escaping from this monastery at this time of the year. So there’s nothing much to do but to face your own mind. You have two choices, either you suffer or you get peaceful. Out of those two I’d encourage the latter. Get peaceful, and calm the mind.

http://www.dhammatal...here_to_die.htm

Edited by Still Waters
Shortened amount of copied text and added source link
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Not many people are going to read such a long post, I'm afraid.

I can't face it at the moment ........ may try later.

Sorry :hmm:

OH! Welcome to UM! :D

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Have You Come Here to Die?

have to agree with Ouija on this, so can i just answer the first question for the time being?

Have You Come Here to Die?

That was not my intentions when I joined this forum.

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I hope I didn't come here to die but I could fall face down over the keyboard one of these days.

Welcome to the forum.

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I did actually. Weird eh? ;)

Welcome!

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I hope I didn't come here to die but I could fall face down over the keyboard one of these days.

Welcome to the forum.

LOL, aint that the truth.

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Posted (edited)

Okay, I got about halfway through and gave up. It just seems to be a circular ramble, going through reams and reams of excessive detail. The only positive thing I can think of is that it would be very interesting as a basis for meditation ...... but talking about it, not so good.

Can I ask what was your purpose in posting this talk, and also, what does it mean to you?

I guess the idea is to 'be dead to the material world' but continue living your life without attachments? (Maybe it says that further on than I read).

Edited by ouija ouija

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I guess this isn't a good topic for people who are unfamiliar with Buddhism or new to Buddhism, I should have realized that. I think talking about death and contemplating one's death is an extremely beneficial undertaking. Things in our lives that we make out to be so important that cause us all kinds of mental anguish are quit often very minor especially in comparison with death. Also, contemplating death tends to spur one on in one's practice, but I should have had the good sense to start out with other Buddhist concepts since the vast majority of people in the western world are so caught up in materalism that death is the last thing they want to talk about. Thank you all for your input and for welcoming me to this site.

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The Cemetery Contemplations of the The Satipaṭṭhāna Sutta are not unique.

"The Stoics recommend an important psychological technique that involves repeatedly imagining future catastrophes as if they are happening now and viewing them with detached indifference. Seneca, who refers to this particularly often, calls is praemeditatio malorum, or the premeditation of adversity."

In William Irvine’s A Guide to the Good Life: the Ancient Art of Stoic Joy , he calls it Negative Visualisation & Hedonic Adaptation.

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Redhen,

I'm glad you brought that up because I actually do that too. I don't know if I've been programmed to feel this way by movies/tv but it does seem that we live in a time when the possibility of some catastophic event is very great. In order not lose control of ones mind in the event that such an occurance should take place I feel it's beneficial to contemplate such things. Your thoughts at the time of your death are considered to have a great effect on where you will end up in your next life according to Buddhist teachings. Thank you for your reply.

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People balk at the cemetery meditations as being gruesome, but it's just one technique to realize the Buddhist teaching of impermanence (annica). I don't want to hijack this thread but there are similarities between these meditations and Stoic negative visualization. Once you've finished either of these techniques, you suddenly value what you still have and don't take them for granted.

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cheers

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If we are attached to the material world, death is frightening because we will loose all of our nice possessions. If we are attached to our "self", death is frightening because we will loose who we are.

If we are not attached to our possessions, if we realize there is in reality no "self", no separate "me" as subject observing the object, that what we are is fundamentally awareness, and that this awareness it is not some entity that is aware of itself, then what is lost in death?

This kind of awareness is not "my" awareness, it is awareness itself. It may be located in my individual brain, but when the lights go out, "I" have lost nothing because there is no "I" to loose anything.

Whether it is actually possible to be in this state of mind is a question I cannot answer for myself. It may be only some intellectual ideal and not achievable in real life. Jiddu Krishnamurti says one must die to the illusion of the self. I think in this sense one must already have died to understand death.

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People contemplate or meditate on their own mortality when they're ready. It's part of a process and we all move at our own unique pace. The same with detachment. I do think that contemplation of life is every bit as important as thinking about death. To live fully and to die both take courage, the difference is that we have a choice about how to live our lives, no choice about dying. I don't think the vast majority of humanity is all about acquisition & material success. Sure, it's important to many people, but seldom is it the only motivator, and it's important to see the world and people is as balanced a way as possible. When we make general statements about groups of people we dehumanize them and fail to see the qualities which we all share, and as we diminish others, so we diminish ourselves.

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Beany,

In Buddhism we do not try to dehumanize people, we have compassion and understanding for them even if they want to do us harm. Metta meditation (loving kindness to all beings) is without question one of the foundations of Buddhism. The Buddha placed this practice on par with that of mindfullness, when you consider how often he spoke of that practice you realize just how important metta is to this religion. Being a westerner myself (born and bred) I think it is self evident that the vast majority of people in the west are extremely materialistic and that tends to make one push the thought of one's death to very back of one's mind. I am stating what I believe to be a fact, I feel sorry for them, I certainly do not have any ill-will towards them. I do at times have thoughts of ill-will but I've got a long ways to go before I reach the ultimate goal.

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Redhen,

I'm glad you brought that up because I actually do that too. I don't know if I've been programmed to feel this way by movies/tv but it does seem that we live in a time when the possibility of some catastophic event is very great. In order not lose control of ones mind in the event that such an occurance should take place I feel it's beneficial to contemplate such things. Your thoughts at the time of your death are considered to have a great effect on where you will end up in your next life according to Buddhist teachings. Thank you for your reply.

For myself, I think I came here to face myself and my attachments and kill them off so I can truly live.

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Logically speaking, when I was born I "came here to die" (although I had no choice in the matter).

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Have You Come Here to Die?

That was not my intentions when I joined this forum.

Those who welcomed me when I came here still have a special place in my heart. It's amazing what a positive effect it has for new members to greet them when they say hello in there nervous first posts as they try introduce themselves, I'd encourage members to do this as you earn yourself a friend strate away and do the forum community a great service,these members I would think tend to stay longer and make more effort, this benefits all.

Others have earnt my deep respect by reading there posts and contributing on topics in the most unexpected ways, its amazing the information some are willing to share, and how two people , or two groups of thought with completely opposing views can gain great respect for one other with just simple acts of friendship.

However, For me I can never be but a passing cloud amongst you.

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Those who welcomed me when I came here still have a special place in my heart. It's amazing what a positive effect it has for new members to greet them when they say hello in there nervous first posts as they try introduce themselves, I'd encourage members to do this as you earn yourself a friend strate away and do the forum community a great service,these members I would think tend to stay longer and make more effort, this benefits all.

Others have earnt my deep respect by reading there posts and contributing on topics in the most unexpected ways, its amazing the information some are willing to share, and how two people , or two groups of thought with completely opposing views can gain great respect for one other with just simple acts of friendship.

However, For me I can never be but a passing cloud amongst you.

I think we're all passing clouds. Which is better than passing gas. Sorry, my evil twin mad me type that. The gas part, that is. But life is ephemeral, so live it up!

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Posted (edited)

Beany,

In Buddhism we do not try to dehumanize people, we have compassion and understanding for them even if they want to do us harm. Metta meditation (loving kindness to all beings) is without question one of the foundations of Buddhism. The Buddha placed this practice on par with that of mindfullness, when you consider how often he spoke of that practice you realize just how important metta is to this religion. Being a westerner myself (born and bred) I think it is self evident that the vast majority of people in the west are extremely materialistic and that tends to make one push the thought of one's death to very back of one's mind. I am stating what I believe to be a fact, I feel sorry for them, I certainly do not have any ill-will towards them. I do at times have thoughts of ill-will but I've got a long ways to go before I reach the ultimate goal.

I wasn't accusing Buddhism of demeaning people. But I often read comments about "them", them being cast or portrayed in negative ways, that's what I was addressing. No, I don't think people in the west are motivated solely by materialism; I think emphasis on materialism is a symptom of something that runs deeper. Fear maybe, feeling unloved or unworthy, ignorance of a different way of being, there's all kinds of reasons. Not that I believe most Westerners are materialistic. I ask myself, who are those people? My friends? My neighbors? My family? My co-workers? Sure, every now & then I run into someone who seems to be shallow and all about acquisition, but perhaps it's my failure to be willing to take the time to look deeper, to look beyond the facade, to find the commonalities. So I wonder what would change if we re-labeled those materialistic people as being instead, afraid. They might not change, but certainly we would. But when you claim most people are materialistic, you are de-humanizing them because you're identifying, organizing, and perceiving solely by that one negative factor, with little evidence of compassion or understanding.

Edited by Beany

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Those who welcomed me when I came here still have a special place in my heart. It's amazing what a positive effect it has for new members to greet them when they say hello in there nervous first posts as they try introduce themselves, I'd encourage members to do this as you earn yourself a friend strate away and do the forum community a great service,these members I would think tend to stay longer and make more effort, this benefits all.

Others have earnt my deep respect by reading there posts and contributing on topics in the most unexpected ways, its amazing the information some are willing to share, and how two people , or two groups of thought with completely opposing views can gain great respect for one other with just simple acts of friendship.

However, For me I can never be but a passing cloud amongst you.

Thats a really nice post, somehow has touched me some what.

We are all passing clouds, some with the sun behind us, some rain clouds and some thunder, thats what makes these forums interesting, you always have a mix of each.

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379664_10152886540205475_1893985957_n.jpg

It is all in the relative meanings of the words, die, live, I or others are all relative in relation. Dying is as much as the same as live and Living is as much the same as dying ... I is as much the same as others and Others is as much the same as I.

Everything is ONE and connected ... not WHAT is connected or WHAT is one ...

In every faith and belief there will come a time when the premise of death is equated with life ... to die so one is to live ... a contradiction to logic because it is designed to 'kill' logic, a paradox to unchained one's inner essence of awareness from the burden of 'programmed' logic.

All things nature / true is not conforming to logic ... Science is gradually becoming aware of this, Science has to reevaluate itself more than once in the recent decade to conform to what Scientific Logic has discovered about 'Reality'

But the barrier to Reality IS redundant Logic ... as Logic cannot approach Reality without logical paths ... and there are no paths of Logic to Reality.

The only reality that logic can present is the reality that logic 'creates' The world that we find ourselves trapped in, which is just a different reflection of the paradox.

In order for this 'logically conspired reality' to advance it has been suggested that it has to kill the divinely inspired Reality, but that Reality cannot be killed because it is Life itself and Death itself. And this logically conspired reality is but an attachment which logic created to manifest itself so that we can hold onto to for awhile.

In a relative sense this 'awhile' has been chained to our 'logic' to perpetuate itself in the belief that if it is non existent ... we too are non existent.

It is in this way that this logic fools us into believing that it becomes reality and that we are merely shadows in its reality where in TRUTH it is it that is the shadow and we are the TRUE reality.

To break free from this untruth is the paradox ... hence to die so that we may truly live. It is not unique to Buddhism. Seek and you will see that ALL religions in its purity and essence says it.

But in order to understand this Dying ... you must first understand Living.

Reality isn't the way you wish things to be, nor the way they appear to be, but the way they actually are. ~ Robert J. Ringer

Words, as is well known, are great foes of reality. ~ Joseph Conrad

As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality. ~ Albert Einstein

`

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We are all part of the willow tree of life, all joined to the same trunk, but so many different branches, new leaves come, old leaves go, but the willow tree is always there.

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I think I'm one of the oldest members here, 69, so all things being equal, I'm probably going to drop dead before you other members. This pleases me in a way, as death is a kind of revenge I will have for all the stupidities of life I've had to put up with. When I'm gone, life will look around for me, but I won't be there to be kicked around anymore. ha ha

I'm sort of serious about this.

The thinking mind can't get its head around its own death no matter how hard it tries. This is why thought invents all kinds of gods and heavens. There's a story in my blog (The Heavens) about technological heavens that the great Corporations had invented. One's mind is uploaded into a computer heaven of your choice. Maybe not a bad idea.

When I die I hope my mind is silent and empty, so that I won't regret leaving anything behind. I think this is the Buddha's way.

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I think I'm one of the oldest members here, 69, so all things being equal, I'm probably going to drop dead before you other members. This pleases me in a way, as death is a kind of revenge I will have for all the stupidities of life I've had to put up with. When I'm gone, life will look around for me, but I won't be there to be kicked around anymore. ha ha

I'm sort of serious about this.

The thinking mind can't get its head around its own death no matter how hard it tries. This is why thought invents all kinds of gods and heavens. There's a story in my blog (The Heavens) about technological heavens that the great Corporations had invented. One's mind is uploaded into a computer heaven of your choice. Maybe not a bad idea.

When I die I hope my mind is silent and empty, so that I won't regret leaving anything behind. I think this is the Buddha's way.

u r confusing different points which is normal, as u also admit it, u cant see in negative facts

u think being as guilty in life as everything there, but that has nothing to do with facts

dead is nothing, everyone sleeps everyday, when u sleep without dreaming how r u thinking of anything to remember or forget

we think our realities bc we have to b inn every second, when we stop being then we are none

the belief that u r a will is a lie, any is according to its obligation to b

that subjective dimension is like a camouflage to justify gods powers over others abuse, which is not subjective at all, they invent pleasures according to what they can do with us or others things

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A reminder: Please post in a civil manner. Please use standard English keeping slang to a minimum.

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