Attachment at the Time of Death Posted 8 Apr 2020
At the time of death the great teachers say that many of us will be afraid of losing what we know and love, and afraid of the unknown ahead of us. Especially, we don’t want to let go of this body or this life. Such attachment to our body and our life can be the source of much unhappiness and distress. Therefore, while we can, we should understand and confront our attachment, so that we are prepared when death comes.
Lama Zopa Rinpoche puts it this way: The mind that clings gets stuck to the object of attachment. When you receive praise: ‘You are so intelligent’, ‘You speak so well’, ‘You understand Dharma so well’, your mind gets stuck to the praise and is no longer free. Like a fly that gets stuck in a spider’s web: its wings get completely wrapped up and it is very difficult to separate them from the web. Or like ants in honey. Attachment is the mind stuck to an object.
Lama Zopa quotes the Kadampa geshes whose advice was to cut off attachment to the ‘eight worldly concerns’: winning and losing, pleasure and pain, praise and blame, fame and disgrace. Consider the first of these, wanting to win at business and become wealthy. Having wealth is not the problem. So, what is the problem? The problem is the mind desiring and clinging to wealth – that is the problem. But if there’s no attachment, no worldly concern, having or not having wealth does not become a problem.
Read more on Cutting Off Attachment