Illness as Mirror

Yutang Lin

Senility and sickness would wrap the body sooner or later;
Painful suffering as being fried or roasted, how to endure?
An open and straight mind may rely on Buddha’s blessing;
Having committed heavy karma it may be too late to regret.


Worldlings who committed evil doings are mostly bewildered by present situations into overlooking the unavoidable suffering of senility, sickness and death. The severe pain of suffering from illness is often inconceivable, extremely difficult to endure, and completely unpreventable. If one’s mind remains clear and calm, even in sickness one could still chant the name of Buddha for help. If one’s karma is heavy and complicated such that one’s mind is in a mess, then even though one has the good sense to regret it would still be too late for redemption. Whenever we see suffering of sickness, we should reflect on what merits and capacity do we have that we could survive such ordeals?

Written in Chinese on February 11, 2002
Translated on March 5, 2002
El Cerrito, California

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