You would hide your face, the child would think that you are gone and when you reveal your face … “Peek-a-boo !” … The child flashes a huge smile. For the child, it was like you were gone forever… and then came back.
Now, what if you could “Play Peek-a-boo”… throughout your life? With every material thing you have accumulated? With all your closest friends and relatives?
Imagine that, at some point, we will all die. The odds are that your parents will die before you do. Kind of depressing, right?
Imagine that the brand new car that own (or want to own) will eventually rust out, break down and need to be traded in or repaired. At the very least, it won’t be the nice car that it is right now. Also kind of a downer, right?
But they are not gone. You are alive and so are your loved ones. Your car has not yet aged. Things are pretty good. Doesn’t that cycle of imagining the inevitable future make you appreciate the present even more?
Buddhist philosophy touches upon a concept called “impermanence”. Their approach is to acknowledge that all things change (they are “not permanent”) and that we should appreciate what we have in the present.
The purpose of contemplating impermance, death and unsatisfactory experiences isn’t to become depressed and have the joy taken out of life. Rather, the purpose is to rid ourselves of attachment and false expectations. If we become emotionally afraid or depressed when thinking about these things, then we are not contemplating them correctly. Meditating on these subjects should make our minds calm and lucid because it decreases our clinging attachment and the confusion that our attachment causes in our lives.”
- From “Buddhism for Beginners” by Thubten Chodron
Peek-a-boo… I see you !
What if you were able to … Open your eyes to the wonderful world you are living in and appreciate what you have.
It won’t be here forever… so make the best of today !
d.Mark “Dave” Wheeler
Peek-a-boo picture found here.