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Reflecting on our own impermanence helps us stop following the dissatisfied mind of desire whose impulses are seen as without meaning in the face of death. When we don’t face impermanence and death, our lives become busy, complicated, and stressful. When we do face them, our lives become simpler and more full of meaning. Our fear of or aversion to facing these subjects is a trick that the mind plays on itself, which keeps us caught in the trap of self-centered, compulsive, neurotic egotism. The illusion that we exist as solid, permanent entities is in fact a trap or prison for our hearts; facing the truth about impermanence is the doorway out.

When those we’re closest to see through our illusions and point out our self-centered mistakes, we quickly get defensive, and if they don’t stop we may become quite angry or enraged. If we look at those arguments in which tempers flare and voices are raised, we’ll find that most are sparked by our feeling that someone else has injured the narcissistic image we cherish in our hearts. In those moments when a loved one’s words run contrary to our illusions, we must choose which we cherish more—the loved one or the illusions.

Skip the Elevator

Skip the elevator and take the stairs. It takes a lot of energy to lift those big ol’ boxes up and down. You can save a lot of energy and resources by skipping it even once a day. Plus, you’ll burn a few extra calories every time you walk up yourself. It’s a win win.

by David

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