Today is the 11th Mother's Day since my own mother, Kayc Kline, passed away after a long and sleepless struggle with cancer and its insidious attendants. In my previous post, I quoted a passage that spoke about how time slowly erases pain, pain great and small, and today I find that it's pretty much right on. I still miss my mother, how funny she could be and how wise and how she was capable of great kindness, kindness that was as natural to her as sarcasm is to we here at Blogagaard, but the shimmering and sickening pain of our loss seems to have faded away to a dull roar.
I was at a party recently that had a high percentage of oldsters in attendance. I was sitting outside in a lawn chair during the party, watching them help each other shuffle in and out of the house as they came and went, and I could not help but feel that this would be the last time I would see most of them alive, that they were actually spirits flitting into the living world for a little party and a little pasta salad before they flitted back again to the Other Side. And some day, at some distant party, some young dude would watch me shuffle out to my car and think similar thoughts about me as well. The idea that life is short is often mentioned, but rarely does it seem to take hold on either the listener or the speaker. I suppose it's too much to chew on, ultimately, and we can only nibble on the edges of our own mortal impermanence. If you tried to swallow the whole life is short cookie in one large gulp, you'd most likely choke, or run screaming into the woods to masturbate yourself silly, a la the movie Into the Wild.
The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying states: "Look still deeper into impermanence, and you will find it has another message, another face, one of great hope, one that opens your eyes to the fundamental nature of the universe, and our extraordinary relationship to it.
Think of a wave in the sea. Seen in one way, it seems to have a distinct identity, an end and a beginning, a birth and a death. Seen in another way, the wave doesn't really exist but is just the behavior of water, "empty" of any separate identity but "full" of water. So when you think of the wave, you come to realize that it is something made temporarily possible by wind and water, and that it is dependent on a set of constantly changing circumstances. You also realize that every wave is related to every other wave."