It is the human story

One of the most fundamental of Buddha’s teachings, is that life, and everything in it, is impermanent. The cause of all human suffering is attempting to make the impermanent, permanent… an obvious impossibility.

But, at the same time, at the center of all human joy is love, and love does not want to lose its beloved.

This is the whole predicament of human existence. Without deep love and affection, life is hallow. In fact, the deeper the love, the greater the humanity. And it is inevitable that, when we love deeply, we don’t want that to change or fade away.

But it does.

To live is to be impermanent. Without constant change, life itself is impossible. So, in all honesty, we have to ask, is suffering inevitable? Is it true that, to be fully human is to suffer? Does the deeper the love mean inevitably, the deeper the sorrow?

Few ask this question. Buddha did. In fact, he completely gave up everything else in his life, in order to find the answer to that question. And what he found was startling and profound. Which is why, 2,500 years later, his wisdom still comforts and guides humanity.

It is neither love, nor impermanence that creates suffering. It is resistance to or denial of life as it is. It is an unwillingness to take in all sides of life, both the love and the loss.

To love is to experience loss. It may be in a minute or it may be at the end of a lifetime. But it cannot be avoided. Resisting this simple and profound truth, keeps your from fully relishing what you have, when you do have it.

The deep, heartfelt attitude of acceptance of the way things are, willingness to both love deeply and to grieve deeply, without resistance, avoidance, reframing or any other psychological mind game, is the key to the end of suffering and awakening to a higher joy.

This moment is unique in all time and space. It will never come again. That is the very definition of rare. So value this moment, like it the last and you will experience the pure joy that is inherent in all of life.