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Wrapping Up the Four Themes

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We add up the four themes:

  • the preciousness, magnificence of our human embodiment endowed with liberty and opportunity
  • the immediacy of death
  • infinity of causality and consequentiality and connectedness to everything
  • the inherently and fundamentally wretched state of being self-centered vs the universe

With the first two themes you can eliminate your hankering after this life only — whatever the pleasures or success of this life might be. You realize that just trying to have a great time, have a million dollars, be famous...are not worthwhile things to use your life for. You’re going to die and these won’t matter to you. What will matter is the state of your mind. So you realize you have to invest more deeply in your existence, in the ongoing state of your soul, your mind.

That reversing of your hankering after this life is developed by focusing on the beauty and value of the human life endowed with liberty and opportunity and on the immediacy of death.

Then, in case you start hankering after a nice future life (like a nice dharma center heavan) you then meditate on the inexorability of karmic evolution, you understand Buddhist biology, you really look, like a scientist, into the world of how causality works and deeply meditate on that, and then, as well, you look at the unsatisfactoriness of even the pleasure states within the egocentric lifestyle. And you realize that the pleasures are unsatisfactory and there’s a much higher pleasure of Buddhahood, which you what you seek to attain.

When we take these four themes together and deeply confront them, we then become truly transcendent and you truly aspire to a life of the dharma.