The Law of Impermanence.
Everything changes, there is nothing which will remain the same forever.
“My readers may suppose that they are physical creatures, bound within physical bodies, imprisoned within bone, flesh, and skin. If you believe that your existence is dependent upon this corporeal image, then you feel in danger of extinction, for no physical form lasts, and no body however beautiful in youth, retains the same vigor and enchantment in old age. If you identify with your own youth, or beauty, or intellect, or accomplishments then there is the constant gnawing knowledge that these attributes can and will vanish.” Seth Speaks by Jane Roberts
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Impermanence, or Anicca in the Pali language, and Anitya in Sanskrit is a universal law that states all of conditioned existence, without exception is temporary, short-lived, and fugacious.
Buddha taught in his Four Noble Truths doctrine that desire and attachment are the causes of all suffering. Letting go of attachment through the practicing of the Eightfold Path is the way to end our suffering.
The Impermanence of Suffering.
All things are impermanent, it is foolish to allow oneself to become attached to that which can never last. When we accept the fact that not only are our possessions impermanent, but our physical bodies are as well, we learn to let go of that which we cling to.
The understanding and acceptance of our own mortality allows us to contemplate seriously about what is most important in our lives. This motivates us to do what is most important while we are still alive, and let go of meaningless attachments that are the cause of our suffering.
Circumstances, and situations are impermanent as well. No matter what situation we find ourselves in, it will never last forever. There is no need to worry, or stress ourselves out about circumstances that cannot last forever, and are inherently impermanent.
“If there is no problem there is no need to worry. If there is a problem, worrying will do nothing to solve it. So there is no need to worry.” ~ Buddha
It is futile for us to become depressed, or emotionally compromised over temporary situations that disrupt our lives. Everything heals, your body will heal when injured, and a broken heart eventually heals as well. Stressful situations can never last forever, and are therefore also impermanent.
Often times circumstances, and events come into our lives that are of a less then desirable nature to us. We blame ourselves for these seemingly negative happenstances that from our point of view seem to permeate our lives on a regular basis.
Many of us will believe that bad karma, or negative situations, “Bad Luck”, seem to always come into our lives, and this belief however disempowering, and erroneous may very well attract these undesirable events into our lives.
Bad karma however, is not meant to punish us for our misdeeds, but to educate us as to the error of our ways, for the only way for us to know the effects of our negative actions on others is for us to experience the same situation ourselves.
The negative events that seem to come into our lives are often taken personally by many, but it is only in hindsight that the big picture is revealed to us, and we find that what we thought was a negative event happening to us was just a naturally occurring incident effecting many others as well.
Hindsight being the great teacher that it is, also reveals to us more often than not that, that which we worried so much about never even came to pass, and our worry was all for naught. It is only in hindsight that we see the impermanence of our “negative event.”
Through the Law of Attraction, we often bring into our lives, both good and bad, that which we focus our attention on the most. If we constantly think about what we don’t want, than the very thing we are hoping to avoid is attracted into our lives. This causes us unnecessary suffering. Focusing your thoughts in a positive manner on what you do want, and taking the action necessary to bring you closer to your dreams will eliminate many of the things that are the cause of our suffering.
All beings suffer. Some suffer too little, and some suffer too much. ~Buddha
I was in Bangkok, Thailand recently, and went to a Seven Eleven to get some snacks and cold drinks. I noticed a homeless man sitting outside not far from the store as I approached. He looked like someone depicted as homeless in a movie.
His clothing that consisted of long pants, and a long sleeved shirt, were gray and dingy looking. His skin was dirty, both his hands and his face were covered in black soot, he looked like he hadn’t bathed in a long time. He looked up at me as I walked by, and I could see that his eyes were clear and bright, a striking contrast to the rest of his appearance. Like everybody else around me in this congested city, I continued on my way without even acknowledging his existence.
I looked through the Seven Eleven store, and picked out a few cold drinks, including my favorite bottled tea to enjoy in the hot Bangkok sun. I then came to a table with sandwiches on it under a heat lamp. I wondered who would eat that stuff, who knows how long it had been sitting there. My mind instantly thought about the homeless man and thought, he would want to eat that food, and would enjoy every bite of it.
I picked out an egg and cheese sandwich with the intention of giving that to the homeless man as I walked past him for him to eat. I went back to the cold drink case to get him a bottled water to wash it down as well, feeling proud of myself for my forthcoming good deed.
I stopped and looked at him as I got back to where he was seated, and handed him the sandwich and a water. He had a look of gratitude in his eyes, as he gave me a slight bow to thank me.
For a brief moment I helped to soften his suffering, or at least his hunger pains. I wondered as I walked away, what happened in his life to put him in that situation.
As dire as his current situation is, it too is impermanent.