33. The Suffering of Sickness
Longchen Nyingtik Meditation 33
Take refuge and arouse bodhichitta.
Meditate on the suffering of sickness: The body is composed of four elements; once they become imbalanced, you are afflicted with diseases and experience severe pain. Previously, you might be quite capable mentally and physically, but when illness strikes, you take a downward plunge. You become short-tempered and are no longer happy. As your faculties of eyes, body, and others decline, you become distressed easily and lose interest in everything. In illness, obstacles caused by maras may arise and you start to hallucinate during the day, seeing the deceased or ghosts, and you can never get a good night’s sleep. No longer your usual self, you are terrified and tormented to no end by the prospect of imminent death.
Sickness is part and parcel of samsaric existence, which everyone has experienced more or less. Taking medicine or getting shots can only ameliorate the ailments temporarily because, even if an excellent doctor can cure all the illnesses of this life, more of them lie in wait in future lives. Therefore, resolve: The only cure to uproot the suffering of sickness is to practice the immaculate Dharma.
Dedicate all the merit of your practice to all sentient beings.