The journey of a 1000 miles begins with a single step

The Winds of Impermanence

Source: The Winds of Impermanence | Great Middle Way

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by

June 12, 2017

5bc2ec8bc05e151d8e68c7c20cae579fWill I die first, or will my neighbor?

Will it be today or tomorrow? We do not know.

Those we leave behind and those who go before us

are more numerous than the dewdrops

that rest briefly beneath the trees and on their leaf tips.

 

We may have radiant faces in the morning,

but in the evening be no more than white bones.

 

With the coming of the winds of impermanence,

both eyes are instantly closed,

and when a single breath is forever stilled,

the radiant face is drained of life,

and its vibrant glow is lost.

 

Although family and relatives may gather

and grieve broken-heartedly, it is to no avail.

As there is nothing else to be done,

the once-familiar form is taken to an outlying field,

and when it has vanished with the midnight smoke,

nothing is left but white bones.

 

This is indeed indescribably sad.

—Rennyo Shonin

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