If you restore balance in your own self, you will be contributing immensely to the healing of the world. - Deepak Chopra
The spiritual journey involves stepping into unknown territory with a hunger to know what is true. One of the essential elements of such a life is the understanding that everything we encounter— fear, resentment, jealousy, embarrassment—is actually an invitation to see clearly where we are shutting down and holding back. - Aura Glaser
Decades ago I made friends with a woman who was nearly 90 years of age. She'd been a teacher all her life and in her ninth decade had a strong, healthy mind. During one of many conversations with her, Beulah told me about living through the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918. Her father died during that time leaving her with a lifelong emotional scar. Beulah lived in a Chicago suburb and at that time it was customary for a family who had a death to place a large black cloth banner on the outside of the home door. She vividly recalls observing in her neighborhood that every third house had a large black cloth banner displayed. She told me "one out of three" families on my street had a death due to the flu.
Here's my take away from that conversation.
Have no fear!
Covid 19 is nothing like the Spanish flu of 1918-1920 which claimed one-third of the population.
Covid 19 death rate continues to be less than one percent for the general population but is higher among those with weakened immunity systems, especially those over 60. Older adults are more likely to already have underlying conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, or respiratory illness. According to World Health Organization (WHO) data more than 95% of COVID-19 deaths were among people over 60 years of age, and more than half of all deaths occurred in people of 80 years-plus. In Sweden, for example, 90% of the deaths from COVID-19 were among people more than 70 years of age.
Covid 19 is unlikely to cause a death in a person who has a healthy immune system. In fact, the best "vaccine" is to keep the body healthy. If you're doing that - and this means eating nutritious meals, avoiding eating out, exercising most days of the week, meditating - then have no fear! Continue to look after yourself physically and spiritually.
Here's the Buddhist mudra (hand positions) to exhibit "no fear". The next time you're feeling anxious about Covid 19 issues, try sitting in meditation for a few minutes maintaining the hand positions of "no fear".
(public domain image from www.pexels.com)
Please feel free to re-post and/or link to your social media.
Do not take physical functioning for granted. This is a gift that shouldn’t be overlooked.
- Rabbi Abraham Twerski
Fear can manifest for us at any time. Many times it related to the past (I am scared that _____ will happen again), or future (I hope ____ doesn’t happen when I get older). This is one of the reasons as Buddhists, we focus so much on being in the present moment, where we are most functional. - Kris Ladusau
Dr. B. Allan Wallace has been a leader for integrating Buddhist knowledge and practices with the vision of Western science. He was one of the first Westerners to be ordained as a Buddhist monk by the Dalai Lama in India.. Interviewed by editors of Buddhist Door, he was asked "How can the ancient tradition of Buddhism help us respond to the severe crisis we are facing?" Here's his response:
In Buddhism, our challenge is to respond to whatever arises to us, whether we regard it as felicity or adversity, good times or bad, and transmute everything that comes our way into our spiritual practice to make it meaningful. So this is indeed a challenging time, but when we look back on human history, when was there not a challenging time, at least for some very significant portion of the human population? These are difficult times medically, but only a small fraction of the human population has been directly influenced by this virus; millions and millions more are influenced by it financially, in terms of their livelihoods. Their sense of security is lost and they wonder whether they can find their next meal, or take care of their families. How do we transform this? If we look at this from a really deep perspective, this pandemic didn’t come out of nowhere.
I’ve read account after account saying that we human beings have created the circumstances that brought this upon us. We are violating our environment; we are violating other species; we have wiped out half of the wildlife on the planet over the last 40 years. We have brought more destruction on the ecosphere than at any time since the great meteor hit some 65 million years ago. We are experiencing now the results of our own actions, even without alluding to the Buddhist view of karma, which I do indeed accept. Karmically speaking, from lifetime to lifetime we’ve actually brought this upon ourselves. So how can we transmute it? Number one, we have to wake up, all of us 7.8 billion people. We have to be aware of how we, collectively, are violating the environment that is not only our home but the home of 20 billion, billion animals with whom we share this planet. We must treat this environment gently, lovingly. We must look forward 10 generations ahead to see that we leave this Earth in better condition than it was when we first arrived. But right now we are, of course, doing the exact opposite.
So we are experiencing the harvest of the seeds we have sown—we, collectively. Especially the rich nations; the nations that pride themselves on an ever-increasing gross domestic product, as if the more you can consume, the more you produce, the more successful your society is: this is an insane notion.
(read the full intervew: www.buddhistdoor.net)
The body reveals our history in surprising—and sometimes unsettling—ways. Things we've long forgotten, our body remembers with impeccable accuracy. - Aura Glaser
People are always looking for the easy way. The hard way - the way learned by difficult experience and painful realizations - doesn't interest them. They want a short-cut. True Dharma seekers are afraid of short-cuts. They know better. They know that without effort, there is no sense of accomplishment. - Han Shan
Look at the news as another product fabricated and marketed to the consumer. - Ajahn Sumano
Victor M. Parachin ...is a
Vedic educator, yoga instructor, Buddhist meditation teacher and author of a dozen books. Buy his books at amazon or your local bookstore.