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What knowledge matters in the end?

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Edited by Richie Cuthbertson, Sunday, 26 Mar 2023, 17:59

Back to studying today. Currently learning about cryptography and how it is used in cyber security. Very tiring to learn actually. Involves a lot of reading, making notes, and trying to understand at times difficult concepts. Feels like wading through treacle.

I have fallen behind by about a week now. And the amount of studying that still needs to be done feels daunting. I talked myself into soldiering on with it though, despite the great reluctance I felt to continue.

Cyber security will be a useful skill to know. So much of our world is run by computers now. And it could be of service to others, to good people, such as Buddhists and other noble organisations that have websites. They are just as vulnerable to cyber attack as anywhere else online. So learning this is not a waste of my time.

I just keep thinking, when death comes cyber security will be the last thing on my mind, it won't mean anything then. My career is not what I will turn to when the body begins to shutdown, when consciousness has to leave this body. It will be all the time I spent learning dhamma that matters then.

It is one of the sufferings of the world I guess, this need to have a livelihood and make an income.

'It's a bitter-sweet symphony this life.
Try to make ends meet, you're a slave to money - then you die.'

The worldly winds..... blowing one this way and that.... that way and this.... pain and pleasure, gain and loss, success and failure, praise and blame... these winds blow one across the treacherous seas of Samsara.

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Walk away

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Edited by Richie Cuthbertson, Wednesday, 2 Mar 2022, 21:10

Life can feel dark and harsh
Leaving one gutted like a market fish
Broken like dropped glass.

The lonely cry an ocean of tears
That noone sees, nor hears.

Life is pain
And never again
Will I come back to this world
I'm going to walk away

one day...

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F#ck Samsara

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Edited by Richie Cuthbertson, Friday, 21 Jan 2022, 21:35

The wind is howling out there, my wheelie bins are knocked over; but I decided to leave them be as they weren't in a place that would bother anyone, and they seemed harmless enough laying sideways on the ground. I will put them back up when the storm has passed. 

Went for a walk, the sea was coming right over the sea wall and flooding the road and pavement, huge waves that looked like something biblical.

 At one point I came across where the sea had flooded over the pavement, blocking where I wanted to be. And I remembered a story about the Buddha when he was with some of his monks and they came across a patch of road that had been flooded by the Ganges and the people around him where frantically making rafts to get across. But he just lifted his foot and like someone taking an effortless stride, teleported and placed his foot down on the other side along with all the monks who where with him. Apparently all the people there looked on in amazement. 

So I tried to imagine I was the Buddha and yes I really was about to make a stride across, then suddenly remembered I wasn't a Buddha yet and that my mind was too full of aversion (a psychic irritant) meaning I would most likely end up f#cking it up and getting soaked in the cold water and would look rather foolish. Luckily though, I spotted a way to get round it, which involved a bit of hopping from one jutting out stone to the next. I consoled myself as I did this by thinking the Buddha would have done the same. He only used miracles to get past obstacles when necessary, and if a non-miraculous alternative presented itself he would use that instead. He even once criticised a yogi who had spent 12 years practising how to walk on water. The Yogi was showing off, and the Buddha un-impressed and rather dryly said to him that he would have been better off using the nearby ferry to get across the river and instead spent those twelve years practising to be free of greed, hatred and delusion, as that was the most valuable power of all, the liberation of nibbana.

The weather today feels like it is reflecting my current mood.The angry bitter tears of Samsara.  I feel fed up and annoyed with everything. Fed up of trying and failing. Feel like I am going round and round in circles, getting nowhere. I try my best, I really do, but that doesn't seem to be good enough for the universe.

 There's also an assignment to do which I am struggling with and I don't anticipate I will get a good grade. It bothers me how bad my memory is getting. I seriously wonder if I have what it takes to do this degree. Still, I won't give up, I will persevere, and maybe one day I will succeed (I hope) and be able to tick the 'Right Livelihood' box on the road to enlightenment, either that or live the rest of my life in poverty. I suppose I could become a homeless solitary monk, meditate with a begging bowl. I think I would rather keep trying as a lay person though.

Here is a 'F#ck Samsara playlist' - enjoy (;


Permalink 1 comment (latest comment by Judith McLean, Tuesday, 7 Dec 2021, 17:37)
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Humble and not conceited

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Edited by Richie Cuthbertson, Saturday, 25 Dec 2021, 14:48

Nobody gets to decide about what kind of human being they will be in this life. It is not like you go to a store before you are born and decide on the kind of body and personality you'll have on Earth. You don't get to choose. Nobody gets a choice with any of it. You are just born into this world, a blind needy crying bundle of flesh. And you have no control over any of it, what kind of body you get, what natural talents you get. Your body just grows all by itself, completely outside your control. It gets hungry, gets tired, needs to go to the toilet, needs to be exercised, and gets sick sometimes.  And as you get older things get more complicated and you are expected to learn different skills and adapt and survive in what can often feel like an uncertain world. And through it all, the body continues to grow and age, ageing till it aches and gets stiffer, and harder to move and starts falling apart, and developing problems that are outside your control. Like me, my hair is falling out, my bald head a potent reminder of impermanence when I look in the mirror. Eventually the body dies. And all that remains is a rotting corpse. What was that all about? What is life all about?

 We don't get a choice about who we are and what abilities we are born with. Nobody on the planet can be good at everything. So there is nothing to be proud of really. Whatever talents you have were given to you by nature, and one day will be taken away by nature. You might be smart, you might be attractive, you might be good at maths, might be good at playing the system and gathering wealth and assets, maybe you are good at sport, maybe you are strong, charming, good at communication, or an artist. But so what? None of it is really who you are, you don't own your talents, and when you die they will all disappear.  So don't get conceited and proud about who you think you are. Be humble.

One thing we do take with us to the next life is our karma. So whatever talents you have, use them wisely, try to be kind and peaceful. Benevolence makes us and other beings happier and puts you in a better state of mind. Don't feel you have to punish or hate anyone, you have no control over what others do, or how they behave. People who do evil will be punished by their own actions, either in this lifetime or a future one. Noone escapes their karma, not even an enlightened being.

 So use whatever you have got, do whatever you can, try to cause as little harm to yourself and other beings as possible; without judging yourself or others in the process. Keep striving, keep moving forward, picking yourself up from failure over and over if necessary. Persevere and keep trying your best to create good karma for yourself, and use this mind as an opportunity to liberate yourself from samsara and find a freedom that doesn't cease. Then you will never have to come back here and go through all this again.

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