June 15, 2012

You've got a minute left. How will you spend it?

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"There comes a point when you know you have take meditation seriously," Ken McLeod says in his discussion of verse 33 of The 37 Practices of a Bodhisattva. He hits us not long after with, "If you had 1 minute left in your life, how would you spend it?" Then he invites us to really stop for a moment and consider that very prospect, providing appropriate background sound effects: tick, tick, tick...

If we're wondering, what with our ambitions, whether we've got the time to practice, practice itself will take care of that:

All efforts to gain recognition and attention are undermined by your efforts to be awake and present in your life. They are mere compensations for a fear of death, unmet emotional needs, or the desire to be someone.

Once again, Ken manages to pack a teaching and a practice into his latest 5-minute video teaching on one of Tibetan Buddhism's foundational texts. Centuries later, it still makes practical sense, something Ken is particularly good at making clear.

You can find Ken's commentary on the first 32 verses here.

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Dominic Gomez's picture

For the Buddhist that last minute is a review of your entire life up to that point. Do you die with regret or with the satisfaction knowing you've done your damndest to help your fellow humans become happy? It's a pivotal point that determines the direction of your next life.