Slipped through the Net

Yutang Lin

Sentient beings are like fish swimming in oceans;
God of Death ceaselessly casts net at any second.
Staying alive now is like slipping through the net;
Remaining breaths are only for awakening others.


A Buddhist friend informed me that their company just went through a wave of layoff. Only a minority survived, and all became gloomy. In my response I mentioned my usual practice of being mindful of impermanence. Realizing that death strikes constantly and incessantly, I think of my survival at this moment as a fish that has just slipped through the net of the God of Death. Remaining breaths are so precious that they should not be squandered away. May they be fully used for awakening deluded beings!

Written in Chinese and translated on July 29, 2003
El Cerrito, California

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