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Thread: Is natural death the only way out? — On the topic of death

  1. #171 Releasing Grief — by Jack Kornfield 
    The heart of this article is a guided audio meditation on grief. Here's is a bit of his introduction.

    Grief is one of the heart’s natural responses to loss. When we grieve we allow ourselves to feel the truth of our pain, the measure of betrayal or tragedy in our life. By our willingness to mourn, we slowly acknowledge, integrate, and accept the truth of our losses. Sometimes the best way to let go is to grieve.

    It takes courage to grieve, to honor the pain we carry. We can grieve in tears or in meditative silence, in prayer or in song. In touching the pain of recent and long-held griefs, we come face to face with our genuine human vulnerability, with helplessness and hopelessness. These are the storm clouds of the heart.

    Most traditional societies offer ritual and communal support to help people move through grief and loss. We need to respect our tears. Without a wise way to grieve, we can only soldier on, armored and unfeeling, but our hearts cannot learn and grow from the sorrows of the past.
    Releasing Grief — by Jack Kornfield

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  2. #172 Fearing Death — by Jack Kornfield 
    From the universal perspective, all things that are born eventually die. Death comes to our best friends and family members, sometimes even to young children. When we grieve, we join in the universal grieving for all those who have died. This is not a tragedy; it is wisdom. From the universal perspective, life is all the more precious and beautiful because it is so fleeting.

    Death is natural. Many people are sick and some will die this year. Some will live years longer and then die. This is our human lot. Because modern culture fosters an intense identification with the outer appearance of the body, going beyond it is not easy. We devote enormous amounts of time to how we look, to dressing, adorning, and strengthening the body. Yet no matter how we cling, as we age the body betrays us. If we limit ourselves to the fulfillment of bodily desires and believe that the body is who we are, when we face aging, sickness, difficulties, and death we will be lost and frightened.
    Fearing Death — by Jack Kornfield

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