Author Topic: Grandparents facing death - I cannot find time to meditate  (Read 432 times)

Chaska

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Grandparents facing death - I cannot find time to meditate
« on: June 20, 2019, 03:59:08 PM »
Dear kind community,
I am looking for your advice.
I am going through a difficult period at the moment. My grandfather is going to die he is complaining and he says he want to leave this world. He is Christian and I don’t really know how to help him. Also while staying all day with him I can’t find time to meditate because he always fall asleep for few minutes and then wake up to ask me for help. It is frustrating and in the same time it’s kind of a service but I can still feel pain and sadness and anger because I don’t find the time to meditate properly during my day to observe the pain.
How do you do when you can’t find the time to meditate because of your responsibilities toward others ? And how do you help your closed ones who are not practicing Vipassana to leave this world with peace? 
Thanks and metta my friends
My life is a stepping stone for something bigger

Matthew

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Re: Grandparents facing death - I cannot find time to meditate
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2019, 06:07:38 PM »
Dear Chaska,

It can be difficult helping someone who is dying. They may become irritable and also frequently sleep then wake requesting help - as you have described.

The thing that is perhaps most important is to be present and mindful: present for him when he is awake, present for yourself all the time. Be aware of the frustrations without identifying with them, acknowledge the frustration yet don't let it become what you are.

You will help your grandfather by being present and mindful as you will come to know intimately his moods and needs: you can help him transition out of this life in the greatest comfort possible. You will help yourself by being present and mindful because this being present can be your meditation - meditation is not something done only on the cushion (that's only practice, now you are doing the real thing).

Be kind and compassionate and present and mindful - for your grandfather, and for yourself. Death is scary for most people - having a family member or loved one present and mindful is the greatest comfort and gift.

May he pass peacefully and as painlessly as possible.

Kind regards,

Matthew
~oOo~     Tat Tvam Asi     ~oOo~    How will you make the world a better place today?     ~oOo~    Fabricate Nothing     ~oOo~

stillpointdancer

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Re: Grandparents facing death - I cannot find time to meditate
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2019, 11:13:09 AM »
Dear kind community,
I am looking for your advice.
I am going through a difficult period at the moment. My grandfather is going to die he is complaining and he says he want to leave this world. He is Christian and I don’t really know how to help him. Also while staying all day with him I can’t find time to meditate because he always fall asleep for few minutes and then wake up to ask me for help. It is frustrating and in the same time it’s kind of a service but I can still feel pain and sadness and anger because I don’t find the time to meditate properly during my day to observe the pain.
How do you do when you can’t find the time to meditate because of your responsibilities toward others ? And how do you help your closed ones who are not practicing Vipassana to leave this world with peace? 
Thanks and metta my friends

Matthew makes a lot of sense, as usual. Does it matter if you don't meditate for a while? Perhaps you can change meditation to mindfulness practice off the mat, so you can at least be there for your grandfather. He probably doesn't want to leave the world peacefully, but kicking and screaming, which is ok if that's what he wants to do. Meditation is best carried out in the quiet time of our lives, when we can give it the attention it needs. At other times we carry on being mindful of what is happening and of what we are thinking and doing.
“You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.” Franz Kafka

Thanisaro85

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Re: Grandparents facing death - I cannot find time to meditate
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2019, 05:38:14 AM »


Could you get a chair and meditate beside your grandpa? While he is awake you can help him with what he need, while he is sleeping you can meditate sitting beside him, just like witnessing the flower withered, human body will break up soon and life is gone...so are you and me.

Everytime you manage to go into calmness, after you come out of meditation, wish your grandpa free from agony and suffering, wish him to be happy.
Buddhist call it radiation of loving kindess. The power of thought after a peaceful meditation, generate the most effective loving kindness.

May your grandpa pass peacefully.
A Mind Unshaken, when touches by worldy matter, sorrowless, secure and dustless, this is the ultimate great blessing~ Mangala Sutta

Nicky

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Re: Grandparents facing death - I cannot find time to meditate
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2019, 03:27:21 AM »
He is Christian ...  And how do you help your closed ones who are not practicing Vipassana to leave this world with peace?

Hello Chaska

It appears you are distraught & your question is not logical because "Vipassana" means to meditate upon impermanence. Obviously, you are not meditating upon the impermanence of your grandfather's life.

As for your grandfather, he is a Christian. As a Buddhist, you are forbidden to convert him (unless he himself asks you about the Dhamma and requests a teaching). Instead, your grandfather should think about Jesus when he is dying.

Best wishes

Chaska

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Re: Grandparents facing death - I cannot find time to meditate
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2019, 04:44:26 PM »
Thanks to all of you for your advice.
It helps me to see that meditating in “real life” (not on my cushion) is already mindfulness. Also reminding myself the impermanence and anicca while observing sensations also helped.
Then the point on Jesus is interesting, i will then reassure him and talk to him about the love of Jesus instead of trying to help him teaching him anapana (thanks for that).
Thanks for your wishes for my grandpa. Metta to you all
My life is a stepping stone for something bigger

dhammaseeker

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Re: Grandparents facing death - I cannot find time to meditate
« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2019, 12:56:07 PM »
Hello Chaska

I'm new to the forums so have come a bit late to reading your post. I hope your grandpa had an easy passing.

Your post reminded me of the passing away of my father a couple of years back. Unfortunately, my father had passed away within 24 hours of being admitted to the hospital. It was very sudden and I never really got to say goodbye.  He went in weak, recovered and then lapsed back into a more serious state all under 24 hours. I remember feeling so confident that it was just a minor phase and we'd be back home for tea. It came as a shock when hospital staff informed  us that there was only 50/50 chance of survival. Later even less than this.

I never really got on with my father. We were opposite ends of the personality spectrum. Originally, he was the first one to have found out about Vipassana  (Goenka) through a friend of his. Saw a lot of changes in his personality for the better. It was miraculous to witness him opening up to me. This change in him intrigued me. He recommended this technique. I decided to wait. To see if this change in him had a lasting affect before making any commitments myself. I eventually did a Vipassana course. It blew me away. It was a life changing experience.  About a decade later he had changed to another faith under the influence of some characters who did not have the best intentions. I saw all those positive traits erode away and witnessed the sad process of him becoming his old self. Whenever I tried to reach out he would push me away. At some point I gave up trying and our relationship became very difficult again.

Despite all the relationship difficulties with my father I will forever be indebted to him for introducing me to this  Vipassana  (Goenka) technique. As a show of gratitude I always send him metta after a meditation sitting ( I find that the metta bhavana is always more effective after a Vipassana sitting).

Strange how dhamma works. The person that I got on with the least, was the one that gave me the most valuable gift in my life - exposure to dhamma. The sad thing  is that I was not able to tell him this nor able to meditate for him to ease his passing.