Think About the Continuation of Life

Think About the Continuation of Life

Date of Advice:
February 2015
Date Posted:
November 2015

A student wrote that his family was going through a difficult time and he was concerned that his father was having suicidal thoughts. His father’s business had failed, leaving a huge debt and his parents were going to lose the family home. They were in their late 60s, turning 70, and couldn’t deal with the failure.

My very dear, most precious, most kind, wish-fulfilling one,
I got your emails. If you tell your father there’s no need for him to commit suicide, saying "I dedicate all my merits to him and to the family," that's like money, good karma or good luck. He should read the Diamond Cutter Sutra three times, if he can. Also I have made prayers. Pass that message to your father, if you can. Even though he doesn't like Buddhism or Buddhists, just pass on the message.

Courage is so important. Perhaps you might know this, but committing suicide when some problem comes and you don't know how to deal with it, when its mentally exaggerated—that's a very ignorant thought. You are not thinking about the next life; you are not allowing yourself to think about the next life.

There is continuation of consciousness, therefore even when the body stops, there is continuation of consciousness, because we are born with suffering. That means before this life there was another previous life, and this life is the result of that. [In the previous life] there was suffering, so now there is suffering. If the previous life was free from the oceans of samsaric suffering and its causes—delusions and karma—then in this life there would be no suffering, only ultimate happiness. So it goes back like this. We have been suffering for beginningless lifetimes. 

If one hundred percent we are going to a pure land or even if we have a perfect human rebirth in the next life, it’s okay, but mostly [our future rebirths are as] hell beings, hungry ghosts or animals, so that would be the most suffering. For example, one fire spark from hell, how hot it is if it comes from there! The heat of the whole human world’s fires put together is like snow falling or air conditioning compared to one small spark from the fire of that hell. This is just an example of the lower realm sufferings, especially the hells.1

Wow, wow, wow, wow, you can't imagine, can't imagine, can't imagine. If you are born not in major hell, but in the hell realm in [a sea of] lava—that's not a major hell but a secondary hell—how unbelievable that would be, to be born there in lava. 

It's like deceiving yourself if you immediately join to the heaviest suffering of the hells after this life. This life is incredible peace. Even if you have those failures that are believed in the West, most are made by attachment and delusion. It's like completely deceiving yourself with ignorance.

Whenever suicidal thoughts come, the remedy is to think about reincarnation, the continuation of life.

With much love and prayers...

[1   See The Perfect Human Rebirth, pp. 25-37, for a detailed description of the hell realms.]