Each wave is born and is going to die, but the water is free of birth and death

A wave on the ocean has a beginning and an end, a birth and a death. But the wave is empty. The wave is full of water, but it is empty of a separate self. A wave is a form which has been made possible thanks to the existence of wind and water. If a wave only sees its form, with its beginning and end, it will be afraid of birth and death. But if the wave sees that it is water, identifies itself with water, then it will be emancipated from birth and death. Each wave is born and it is going to die, but the water is free of birth and death.
– Thich Nhat Hanh ‘Essential Writings p65

Advertisements

Our greatest fear is that when we die we will become nothing

“Our greatest fear is that when we die we will become nothing. We believe that we are born from nothing and that when we die we become nothing. And so we are filled with the fear of annihilation. The Buddha has a very different understanding, that birth and death are notions. They are not real. ” – from ‘No Death, No Fear’ by Thich Nhat Hanh

“When I drink tea it’s very pleasant to…

“When I drink tea it’s very pleasant to be aware
I am drinking cloud.” What happens when you die?
by Thich Nhat Hanh

…….You may think you are still alive but in fact you have been dying everyday, every minute, cells die and are born – for neither do we have funerals or birthdays (laughter).

Death is a very necessary condition of birth. With no death, there is no birth. They inter-are and happen in every moment to the experienced meditator. For instance a cloud may have died many times, into rain, streams, water. The cloud may want to wave to itself on earth! Rain is a continuation of the cloud. With a meditation practitioner nothing can hide itself. When I drink tea, it’s very pleasant to be aware I am drinking cloud.

When you are parents, you die and are reborn as your children. “You are my continuation, I love you.” The Buddha told us how to ensure a beautiful continuation – a compassionate thought, a beautiful thought. Forgiveness is our continuation. If anger, separation and hate arise, then we will not ensure a beautiful continuation. When we pronounce a word that is compassionate, good and beautiful that is our continuation.

When a cloud is polluted, the rain is polluted. So purifying thoughts, word and action creates a beautiful continuation. We can see the effects of our speech in our children. My disciples are my continuation ­– both monastic and lay. I want to transmit loving speech, action and thought. This is called karma in Buddhism.

This body of mine will disintegrate but my karma will continue – karma means action. My karma is already in the world. My continuation is everywhere in the world. When you look at one of my disciples walking with compassion, I know he is my continuation. I don’t want to transmit my negative emotions, I want to transform them before I transmit them. The dissolution of this body is not my end. Surely I will continue after the dissolution of this body. So don’t worry about my death, I am not going to die.

Let us meditate on the birth of a cloud. Does it have a birth certificate? (laughter) Examine the notion of birth – the notion that nothing can come from something, from no-one to someone. Is it possible for something to come from nothing? Scientifically this is not possible………………

from a talk by Thich Nhat Hanh

http://www.plumvillage.org/transcibe/7-what-happens-when-you-die.html

Quotes from the Heart of Buddha’s Teaching by…

Quotes from the Heart of Buddha’s Teaching by Thich Nhat Hanh

“The seed of suffering in you may be strong, but don’t wait until you have no more suffering before allowing yourself to be happy.”
― Thich Nhat Hanh, Heart of Buddha’s Teaching

“Letting go gives us freedom, and freedom is the only condition for happiness. If, in our heart, we still cling to anything – anger, anxiety, or possessions – we cannot be free.”
― Thich Nhat Hanh, Heart of Buddha’s Teaching

“The wave does not need to die to become water. She is already water.”
― Thich Nhat Hanh, Heart of Buddha’s Teaching

“Usually when we hear or read something new, we just compare it to our own ideas. If it is the same, we accept it and say that it is correct. If it is not, we say it is incorrect. In either case, we learn nothing.”
― Thich Nhat Hanh, Heart of Buddha’s Teaching

“The Three Kinds of Pride are: (1) thinking I am better than the other(s); (2) thinking I am worse than the other(s); and (3) thinking I am just as good as the other(s).”
― Thich Nhat Hanh, Heart of Buddha’s Teaching

“Birth is okay and death is okay, if we know that they are only concepts in our mind. Reality transcends both birth and death.”
― Thich Nhat Hanh, Heart of Buddha’s Teaching

“Anxiety, the illness of our time, comes primarily from our inability to dwell in the present moment.”
― Thich Nhat Hanh, Heart of Buddha’s Teaching