Walking up Packard Ave. on Sunday morning.
I don’t shiver.
The roads aren’t white,
and the wind blows.
Life is generally suffering. While we may be able to understand that everything changes and that suffering is caused by our concepts of reality conflicting with our experiences – anitya and duhka – that understanding itself is in flux. As Nagurjuna states, “we do not experience anything empirically which does not change, and so never know of fixed essences in the world about us” (Inoue 38), implying that even our understanding of anitya and its effects, essentially our whole means of dealing with suffering, “is like a floating clouds which changes and vanishes” (Vimalakirti as cited in Keene 100).
But that is not completely upsetting, because at the moment, I find living to be valuable. Within that thought I feel that suffering is valuable too. It gives me context for when I am not suffering, and it is one of the ways I understand I am happy. It is not simply a matter of at least I am not in that bad of a situation, but rather, I am experiencing something, and for that I am happy. Maybe it’s a naïve thought, but Lady Sarashina seems to understand: “we continue to live despite suffering” (Baldick 107).