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Loving, Impermanence and The Illusion of Self…


August 1, 2010 by Anjuelle Floyd

I recently read he 20th century Tibetan Buddhist master, Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche’s commentary on Lama
Mipham’s The Wheel of Investigation and Meditation That Thoroughly Purifies Mental Activity.

Khyentse Rinpoche writes in the commentary, “Instead of being convinced that there is a self-entity, we realize that
self is a mere concept.“

His words immediately drew me in.

A psychotherapist, I am forever pondering notions of self and other, phenomena, as Khyentse Rinpoche urges are but
constructions of the mind in it, and our feeble efforts to understand and navigate the world, life and loving.
But there I go again, linking the mind, my thoughts and feelings to me, and who I really am.

Khyentse’s commentary, listed in the Summer 2010 Issue of the Buddhist Review, Tricycle, followed a brief article by
Jakob Leschly, wherein Leschly describes his 16-year experience, starting in 1975, of studying with Dilgo Khyentse
Rinpoche along with many others who were students of the meditation master.

Master Khyentse’s axiom on the our obsession with self as an entity separate from others are a balm that both soothes
and grates on our nerves and fears reaching into and rooted in our deepest anxieties. It is those, rather these, internal
worries that both divide and link us as humans.

I wonder what would happen if we could be more open about what frightens us the most, haunts our securities, hunts
down our egos with threats of destroying us, this notion of self that stands between us and them, me and you, self and
other.

My soon-to-be released novel, The House, displays the protagonist, a wife, whose husband she was divorcing does this
when learning that he is dying of cancer.

As a wife these ponderings cut to the thick of what I think marriage is all about–self and other and the battle to become
one in body and spirit, soul and mind.

In a culture such as America where the notion of and individual self stands head and shoulders above all other pursuits,
even that most sacred of happiness, I often wonder if this is why the divorce rate stands enormously tall, or perhaps we
at least find the act of remaining in and committed to relationship almost repulsive.

Words like, …strong…, and …independent.., combined with phrases such as …I felt crowded in, needed my space…,
and/or …I don’t want to become too dependent or weak…, allude to the desire to see ourselves as strong through the
ability to divide and separate ourselves from another, and deny our need for intimacies that but for relationship with
other we will not experience.

The need to stand firm and strong propels us to cut ourselves from the very parts of who we are.

Isolation breeds not only further isolation, and loneliness, but also ignorance of who we truly are, the ground of being
that lies beneath the aggregates of our human organs encapsulated in the flesh of our body swirling in the more ethereal
phenomena of thoughts and feelings that give us this elusive and illusionary sense of self.

When in meditation and contemplating in the midst of fleeting thoughts and the ebbs and flows of the vicissitudes of
emotions rising and falling, who this being called Anjuelle is and the meaning and purpose of my life and living
beyond buying, spending, working and toiling at activities wrapped in various sheaths of impermanence, I must always
fall back upon my experiences of being both a wife and friend to my husband, a companion who promised in our vows,
my promise, to serve faithfully and unto death as a helpmate and lover.

I can do no other.

Any less would abdicate myself from what stands at the center of my heart’s desires, the path on which my soul yearns
not simply to tread but immerse my life and living in–that of losing my ego, this sense of separateness that divides both
me and others from the phenomena of my existence.

To embrace impermanence and the transitory nature of this life we must hold onto what is real and substantive.

For me these are life, death, and the wheel of continual change, and at the center of which stand love and everlasting
compassion and respect for those who have stepped from among the trees of other and for no explainable reason loved
and adored us.

Posted in Marriage | Tagged marriage, love, self, Tricycle, Buddhist Review, Lama Mipham, Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse
Rinpoche, Jakob Leschly, The Wheel of Investigation and Meditation That Thoroughly Purifies the Mind, meditation,
Buddhism, Tibetan master, transitory, life, death, living real, substantive, impermanence, change, ego, other, world |
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Loving, Impermanence and The Illusion of Self… August 1, 2010 by Anjuelle Floyd I recently read he
20th century Tibetan Buddhist master, Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche’s commentary on Lama
Mipham’s The Wheel of Investigation and Meditation That Thoroughly Purifies Mental Activity. Khyentse
Rinpoche writes in the commentary, “Instead of being convinced that t […]
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