In this culture, the birth of a baby is celebrated: inviting a new person into this life, but death is so often seen as wrong or bad: the ending of this lifetime as the ultimate defeat and loss. Each is a journey taken alone as an individual self, yet surrounded by those with us at every stage. I could instead put my attention on the inevitable suffering a baby will experience through this physical life, and perhaps the joyful relief of leaving physical suffering behind when it is done, but that that might deny the beauty, joy, growth, and flowering that can take place between birth and death. The opportunity for the freedom of awakening (or re-birth?) ending suffering opens with that flowering in this lifetime, but if that's just another limited concept, ritual, or abstraction it cannot fulfill that promise. To choose spending time and energy with those in transition (of any stage) looks like an expression of that freedom to me.
On May 21, 2023 Ted wrote :