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Unavoidable Taboo--Death, I Want to Know (Part 2)

Popularity 1Viewed 2662 times 2016-5-12 11:24 |Personal category:common sense, life, religion|System category:Life| Common sense, life, religion, education, culture

                        Part 2--The Negative Effects of Death Dodging

Dodging death does not mean death will not exist. It always awaits you somewhere.

Ignoring it just brings more fear to your heart, because horror always comes from ignorance and lack of knowledge of something.

Multitude of secular people unconsciously plunge into deep sea of agony, fear and trepidation while facing the last phase of their life either ainhome bed or in the ICU (Intensive Care Unit) of hospital; as in their mind, the impending demise grows larger and darker, knowing nothing about what it is like after his/her heart beat ceases.

In order to see what on earth is torturing a man so devastatingly at the finality, I had ever laid in bed, pretending that I am counting down my life, and tried to figure out the factors affecting the man’s thinking then: mostly they are the wealth you collected, the fame you treasured, the status you possessed, the prestige you enjoyed, the relationships you built ...... all in one word, it is these factors that had ever driven your life, and it is also these factors that enslave you, bond you and bring you measureless anguish now.

No matter how suffering it may be, one has to face it, bear it and accept it.

Death ends life. Now we come to the afterlife in Part 3.

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)


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Reply Report teamkrejados 2016-5-14 12:42
A paradox: you cite the very examples The Buddha gave for ending suffering in real life and suggest one should let go of such attachments. But then, unlike the Buddhist tenet, you suggest one has to live with that suffering - implying that one should maintain attachments.
Could you help clear up this paradox, please?
Reply Report zhanggli2010 2016-5-14 21:29
teamkrejados: A paradox: you cite the very examples The Buddha gave for ending suffering in real life and suggest one should let go of such attachments. But then, u ...
Sorry for the confusion brought to you!

In fact, under the topic of "Unavoidable Taboo - Death, I want to Know", I am adressing the average people's thinking mode and reaction while facing the coming final stage - death. It is just because we (at least including myself), average people, have not comprehend thoroughly the "emptiness" of the universe that we cannot let go of such attachments as taught by Buddha, consequently and unsurprisingly, we have to live with or tolerate the
suffering caused by these attachments, we have no way to escape.

So, when it is perceived  from the point of view of a common person, the paradox will be no paradox.

But, how difficult it is for a common person to understand  "emptiness"!  Everything we see just stand still there and who can say it is "empty"?

For exchange of personal views, I'd like to introduce briefly how I tried to fathom the nature of "emptiness". It will be highly appreciated if I can hear from your personal experiences here.

It starts on the basis of our daily life:

On one table is there a cup of hot water; beside it is a pinch of tea-leaves.
Now, I ask you: At this moment, is there any "tea" that we can drink?
It is sure to answer: Currently speaking, no.
Put the tea-leaves into the hot water, stir it for while and then a wisp of tea aroma comes out.
Now, I ask you:At this moment, is there any tea that we can drink?
The answer must be: Of course there is.

Now, a further question: Intrinsicly,is it itself "tea" ? or you just "name" the liquid that you drink as "tea"?

I think it is the latter one that is more consist with the truth,right? Because the tea you drink did not exist at first, and it is just after mixing the hot water and tea-leaves that we got a cup of liquid, and then we call/name the liquid as "tea". In the final analysis, there is no "tea" itself on earth, we just call it tea.

From here, you can go further and further like peeling the onion layer by layer.

Now, you take "water" as your object. Ask the similar questions and do the similar analysis, then you will see: in this world, there is no "water" itself on earth, it is just the compound of two Hydrogen molecules and One Oxigen molecule. From the Hydrogen molecule,
you can divided them into infinite tiny particles step by step until you have no name to name them.

By this means, I tell myself that you can "not" find one thing/matter in the universe that can have a "self", which means it can exist independently, it is itself having nothing to do with others; no, you cannot find such a thing.

So I also tell meyself: in this universe, what really exists is the interdependent relations, from the invisible quantum world to the tangible material spheres.

In Budhism, there is a term dubbed "dependent origination", which precisely and esthetically sums up this concept.

After having realized this truth, shall we still insist on maintaining those attachments?

At least, our thinking mode may have a big change, and our world view will also be adjusted accordingly.

For myself, "dependent origination " really has a significant influence on my world view.
Reply Report teamkrejados 2016-5-15 13:35
Your answer reminds me of The Euthyphro Dilemma: is it good because god commands it or does god command it because it is good? Or, more simply put: which came first, the chicken or the egg?
However, there is such a think as overthinking, and over-simplifying. In this case, my friend, I believe you might be overthinking.
While the tea analogy is apt, the water analogy takes the idea too far; it creates a slippery slope argument. It is true that water consists of hydrogen and oxygen, but each molecule of oxygen/hydrogen is, in itself a compound of: protons, neutrons, electrons - all balanced to form physical and chemical properties unique to that type of molecule.
Emptiness: I simply cannot believe in that concept. Nothing is actually empty - well, maybe black holes   . The saying 'Nature abhors a vacuum' has basis in fact; even the supposed void of space is full of energy; magnetic forces that either attract or repulse matter. Is an empty glass truly empty? No, it contains at least air.
The concept of 'Energy' is the basis of the Tao, wherefrom we get our qi - life force. In fact, art embraces science to demonstrate that theory: in the movie saga Star Wars, the catchphrase is 'Let The Force Be With You'. Which force do you suppose that to be?
Reply Report zhanggli2010 2016-5-16 14:49 (Pending for approval)
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Reply Report teamkrejados 2016-5-17 12:08
zhanggli2010: By this reply , I  want to put a few more words on the concept of "emptiness" from a pragmatic point of view.

1. The purpose for understand ...
I am sincerely impressed! Your thesis - that emptiness comes from interdependence rather from lack of dependence must surely be a fundamental philosophical truth. Perhaps that is why people run away from their beautiful homes to wander around shopping centers with full wallets and empty hearts.
These days, at least in America, the catchphrase is 'every person has value'. However, that phrase neglects all other living beings - trees that clean our air, vegetables that feed us and beasts, all things which support life itself. Thus, with regard only for people, society tends to ignore that people are only a small part of 'Life' - as you say: the whole universe is a net.
Reaping what you sow: exactly! Maybe not spoken in ponderous philosophical terms, but deep and pointed nonetheless.
There is nothing wrong with your philosophical bent or your English skills my friend. I can understand you clearly.
Thank you for sharing your views and ideas.

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