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★Nothing Lasts

“Seek Solace In Impermanence”

What does this mean to you?

This post was converted automatically from the old bmindful article archive. Some of the links or references in this post and many below it may no longer exist

“How easy it is in our life, to miss what’s being offered.” — Paul Haller

Named after an album I was listening to at the time I posted the article, the actual statement came to me after doing a little reading into buddhist philosophy. It took weeks to put it so succinctly.

To me, this isn’t positive or negative, it just is. This can help get you through those hard times, or to keep you motivated when your on top of the world.

I’d love to see what this means to you, please comment below with your thoughts – positive or negative.

“How easy it is in our life, to miss what’s being offered.” — Paul Haller

It could also make you appreciate things a little more. Keeping it in mind might make you ‘stop and smell the roses’ more often?

Since nothing stays the same, as long as you are improving, that’s a very good thing. I like it.

I think I am realizing that this is the truth….I finally learned after 48 years on this earth. Not to bring anyone down or anything, I have found in my personal experience that falling in love with someone lasts for a certain amount of time. It’s wonderful when you are newly in love, you are still learning about one another. Seems to me after a certain amount of time, could be months or years, the routine sets in, it’s boring, the person is getting on your nerves, with all the things that you used to find cute about them. I hope someone comes up with a better philosophy, because truthfully, the situation can be depressing. Trying to live in the moment & not dwell on the past or the future is probably the best way to view things…..but sometimes your mind just wanders. Well, thanks for listening, whoever reads this.

Nothing remains the same for two consecutive moments.
Heraclitus said we can never bathe twice in the same river. Confucius, while looking at a stream, said, “It is always flowing, day and night.”
The Buddha implored us not just to talk about impermanence, but to use it as an instrument to help us penetrate deeply into reality and obtain liberating insight. Thich Nhat Hanh
I Agree with Robin Skeen

Love Life
Sue

In response to calicocat75’s comment:
I know exactly what you mean… since I am experiencing the same thing. Routine sets in, we notice nigly little irritating things about the other person and little things become big problems if they are not nipped in the bud. Relationships can be complex if two people pull in different directions. Love? What is love, really? I guess we are constantly learning, and yes, I agree, things keep changing… but I do have one thing that is lasting and does not change…my faith in. Perhaps sometimes that may falter, but it will never change. I am not very religious, but I believe and that belief, perhaps is what helps me to survive the daily challenges I face.

The other day I had a question pop into my head. My narrative voice asked,
“What is the beginning or the end of Now?”

I feel that this is something you would remind yourself of during times of grief or distress. To me, it says to find comfort in that temporary ‘set-back’ which ails you, for it will soon pass and you will be that much stronger. In my opinion, this is a very wise statement and could be words of comfort to those in need of emotional uplifting.

This phrase has come at a good times for me. In just over a weeks time my family and I complete on our house move. Its been a long time coming, we put our house on the market in january, but now the waiting is coming to an end. I agree with Enchanted raeven that its something to remind yourself of in times of grief and setbacks. Ive always believed deep down that waiting to move would not last. The phrase nothing lasts give you appreciation of the good times and stength in the bad times

enjoy life!

‘Nothing’ doesn’t last. ‘Something’ is always happening and therefore, changing. It’s impossible for me to conceive the notion of ‘nothing’. To me, it’s the same as infinity. I suppose it depends on perspective. Is ‘nothing’ a lack of sensation or merely a lack of possession, or both? My own thinking is that ‘nothing’ does not exist. ‘Nothing’ is just a relative term; a private comparison based on personal experience. So, when I hear someone say “Nothing lasts”, my personal reaction is that it’s ‘nothing’ that doesn’t last.

I like a poem about Nothing. Sorry I dont know the author…

What is Nothing?
Meditate
forget everything you know
and your there
not where you thought you’d be
not the void
you won’t find the void if you try to look for it
only shadows
until you wake up
blinded by light

There is something you cannot do
no matter how hard you try
you cannot stop being
you are beginning and ended
You cannot end what is
has already been and is done
you are here and have been
its too late to change your mind
even if you had a choice
you cannot stop being

The void is unreal
there is no such non-thing
that nothing doesn’t happen anywhere
the nothing we talk about
the nothing we think we know is everything
everything is the past and the future
everything is invisible
because it is full
how could you see
when everything is one

What is empty is full
What is no place is everyplace
What is zero is at balance
What is destroyed is calmed
There are zero things to do there
because all is beginning and all is done
Space is empty
only when everything is in its proper place

Love Life
Sue

The title “Nothing Lasts” was meant as a bit of a pun – Nothing Lasts, as in everything is impermanent, or Nothing Lasts, as in “Nothing” lasts.

Wayne Dyer does a good job of explaining this in his CD “10 Secrets For Success and Inner Peace” – he says that “nothing” is the only thing that doesn’t have sides. Almost everything else in your life has a division – tall:short, young:old, good:bad, up:down, male:female, black:white. Unlike everything else, nothing is indivisible, you can’t cut it in half, it just is, it is one – just to clarify, this paragraph is almost verbatim from the CD and wasn’t my original thought.

It is the reason many people choose to meditate on “nothing” – and writing this made me realize that “nothing” might be a powerful thing to “center” yourself on. Something completely unambiguous and indivisible inside of yourself.

Note that rather than contradicting the statement in this article, I think this interpretation of “Nothing Lasts” it complimentary :)

“How easy it is in our life, to miss what’s being offered.” — Paul Haller

In response to kev’s comment: I agree with you completely! Nothing is a relative term, and so are all words! To quote Wayne Dyer again – the word water can’t get you wet :)

“How easy it is in our life, to miss what’s being offered.” — Paul Haller

The only thing that is certain is that nothing is certain. Embracing this sentiment and finding comfort in its arms is gowing with the flow.

We are all ONE, what you do to or for another, you do to or for yourself.

I feel an affaimation such as this can not be used generally, for there are things that last and things that do not.

looking into it deeper, “ nothing “ is something. “ nothing “ is in the absence of something.

as is the case with most affirmations, each person gives it different meanings.

I would suggest that ‘Nothing’ is the absense of ‘something familiar’. Even total darkness and complete silence can really be something at the end of a hard day. As I clumsily tried to suggest earlier; I think ‘nothing’ is relative and therefore, as you say, different for everyone. I’m not sure how this thread will end, or even if it can but one thing’s for sure; ‘Nothing’!!

In response to thoughtless’s comment:
my head hurts.

In response to kev’s comment:
My head hurts.

Anything can last if you want it to…ones imagination can keep it going. But, what is last? how long are we talking here? Not sure I want things to last.

‘Seeking solice in impermanance’ Hhhhhmmmmmm! It would make me very happy if we could change the subject?

I think in order to find out what the true meaning of the afirmation means, we must try to think why it was used in the first place.instead of giving it our own meanings. Was it a fools comment, in a moment of ignorants? or a philosopher attempting to some up all that is real?

You all have very good view points, it has a number of different meanings to all walks of life. I think is gives those who choose to use it permission to just BE, be loved be happy and be free to choose your own path and destination.

In Light Sarvaga

I have no idea what it means. And so for now…… off to work. Fortunately, though I love my job, the workday always leads to an end, and from there, here I am again……. Have an awesome day

In response to calicocat75’s comment:

I have just the opposite experience. I married young at 18 with my wife at 17. After 25 years we are still happy together. Yes, there are things that annoy me, like her leaving the seat up…… oh wait, that’s me

The key IMHO is to remember the past and learn from it, plan for the future, but live in the now. By living in the now, we can overlook past sleights and focus on the continuing wonder.

I hope you find peace and someone to share it with. — Phil

“Nothing Lasts”, “Seek solace in impermanence” When I think of these two statements, I think of the 33 year marriage I have and the reality that it will not last forever and that bothers me. We TWO have become ONE up to a point and the time will come when We ONE will become TWO again. When I think of these two statements with regards to material things I think its wise to walk with these in our frontal lobe. It’s the material things we want to last forever that were never intended to last forever. They break, fall apart, age, change. Everything changes. I guess when i think of these two statements in a spiritual mind I believe they last as truth forever.

It seems like this is a lite version of someone trying to say, basically, “be happy in ‘the’ moment.”

Why stop short with “solace,” why not happiness?(!) I’d also prefer to use almost anything other than “impermanence”,” like “change,” “new happenings,” “new possibilities”… something suggesting improvement rather than a lack of anything, in this case “permanence”.

In response to jennifre’s comment: That’s an interesting perspective! You are right of course, it’s always better to look on the bright side.

Thanks for your comment!

“How easy it is in our life, to miss what’s being offered.” — Paul Haller

Everything lasts (Albeit in ever changing expressions of itself)

I quite appreciate these comments but let me just add that to make the reality less “painful” we should always bear in mind that, EVERY END IS ACTUALLY A NEW BEGINING AND EVERY BEGINNING IS ALSO AN END.

When life is good, and by life i mean sense of self, relationships, money, work, pastimes etc, we all want times like these to continue without interruption. Life, however is not like that. We should realise that life offers us everything, good and bad, moods, emotions, experiences. We should also remember that in all that life offers, none of it is permanent, only temporary, almost fleeting. Once this is understood, you are able to take whatever life throws at you, good or bad with equal and enjoy, accept the moment, because it will not last! So, indeed, seek solace in inpermanence.

I agree. Nothing does last. Its the only thing i can count on to remain the same. Every time i visit nothing its the same as it was last time. I like nothing.

In response to calicocat75’s comment:
Nothing lasts forever but also giving up on things is not always the answer. Re Love. In my mind with Love the goal posts change all the time. Love is a flow of energy like a river, sometimes flowing smoothly, sometimes it fast and furious, sometimes tumberling over rocks or boulders. Whatever energy you create in life follows you. Love is like planting a seed, it needs constant support to nuture it, its a balance, its freedom, its laughter and happiness.
It’s ironing out the creases and filling the cracks. It’s growing and changing all the time it needs maintaining at all times. But like the river you need to go with the flow, and enjoy.

Love Life
Sue

Nothing lasts because it is ever-changing, transforming, re-creating. I’ve also heard that the Source of everything lies in Nothingness. The end is the beginning. It is a beautiful paradox.

If now is good – be grateful and savor it. If now is bad – it will change. In either case, expect it to be good and make it so.

In response to thoughtless’s comment:
Interesting response. What, in your opinion, is one thing, in the entire universe that lasts?

From my perspective, there are no such things as phenomena that are permanent. Nothing is not merely the absence of something, it also, at a deeper level is Emptiness (“sunyata” in Sanskrit). A numenal reality, which is indivisible, inexplicable and timeless.

I do believe that the way to determine if something is real or part of the created (illusional) world is to determine if it is permanent or not. No-thing is permanent. No emotion is permanent. No experience is permanent.

Emptiness — the smallest space between particles at a super-sub-atmonic level is permanent apparently. And according to Buddha, Love is the “Eternal Principle”, which means that real love, not the emotional/delusional/attachment oriented experience that glimpses Love and goes by the same name, is the ultimate reality. Love is thus not a phenomenon, but numenal reality.

Think about this, most people go through life searching for love. They look for it in relationships, people, jobs, food, music, art… Philosophers ponder it. Psychiatrists study it.

There are also those who, being of a more superstitious and less philosophically sophisticated/mature bent, seek god their whole lives. They look for it in religion, churches, synagogues and mosques, temples and rituals, prayers and plagiarised spiritual texts like the bible.

Both of these groups are seeking their ultimate meaning, from different perspectives… both are seeking the Ultimate Reality. To the less mature spiritually — those who live in a delusional and dualistic world — that reality is separate from themselves, and thus is their God(dess). For every human, there is, I believe, a primal quest for love.

The “stuff” that has existed through eternity… the stuff that makes us One… the stuff that preceded stuff… is Love.

So perhaps you are right, ultimately. Unless we conceive of Love as Nothing/Emptiness/Suchness (which I do), then perhaps we need to rethink the expression “Nothing lasts forever…”

Namaste -

In response to Lee Nutter’s comment:
To me Lee this means that you should understand that nothing is permanent, and to easy the grief know that it will not last forever. In other words “This too shall pass.”

Attitude Life Coach, helping others to see the Power of a Positive Attitude with Affirmations and Gratitudes, Learn to be The Creator of Your Life.

I feel useless with this “nothing lasts” phrase.it does give some moral boost and energy in tough situation but it is too depressing a fact to try anything worthwhile.if “nothing lasts’, why shouldn’t I enjoy my life with whatever means I can instead of struggling to follow high moral standards to live? any answers?

I can’t begin to tell you how comforting “Nothing Lasts” is to me right now. Today would have been my son’s 43rd birthday. He died 17 years ago. Even thought I intellectually know all the spiritual stuff…yes, yes, he is alright, etc, etc etc…and he is hopefully enjoying a wonderful and happy ‘new’ life…
But I am just miserably down…have tried everything I can think of to lose this feeling…but all I that gives me any hope right now is “Nothing lasts” .. My trust in that reminds me, (Even though right NOW it doesn’t exactly make me feel good right now…) that “this, too, shall pass.” A number of other things are looming on the horizon that need healing and especially Letting Go Of…
Nothing DOES last … The Good, the Bad, nor the Ugly…everything constantly changes. The only constant IS change…When Seth taught us: you experience it ALL…he wasn’t just whistlin’ Dixie…

In response to Betty’s post:
Anniversaries of those who’ve passed..definitely bring up lots of things. Again, so sorry for your loss..I pray the things you miss the most will (when you are ready) ..bring you warmth of cherished memories.

Until then, wherever you are..sending you love(:

Dear Betty im sending you a big hug ,thank you for sharing your sadness and i hope knowing you are cared about helps a bit .love and peace flowergirl

Sure, nothing lasts. But everything dissolves into nothing. That means everything lasts.

The best kiss of your life happened. You remember it. It has a place and a time. Dwell on it. Dwell IN it. You can live inside the fact of that kiss for as long as you want.

Betty your son is always here. You can live in every fact of him, everything he ever did, the smell of him as a baby, his older smile, all of his words.

Here in North America the fireflies are lighting our evening yards and fields. We are still the children we were, barefoot collecting those fireflies. We are just as excited. We are always those children.

Long after our Sun goes dark and cold, we will still be here. Everything that happened will still be here. We are unerasable.

I’ve read a little on Buddhist beliefs. They are challenging and I’ve gained something from considering them. But I have a slightly different perspective now. There is wisdom in recognizing the temporary nature of situations we find ourselves in. It is a good way to access patience and tolerance. I know that in Buddhism the idea is applied to practically everything so that one trains their mind to release the notion of a “permanent self.” But my belief is that there is something permanent that lasts after death. And there is a correlating belief in Buddhism: the Buddha Nature. Some Buddhists believe that this “precious jewel” is the awareness that resides in all beings and experiences Nirvana. It is not believed to be the same as a person’s identity. The awareness doesn’t say “I am this. My soul is this mind and these feeling and ideas are me.” Buddhism is a system of such subtle beliefs and ideas. It is fascinating. And it’s a pretty complex subject. Speaking directly about impermanence, again, I think might be an effective way to access patience in ourselves. I also access patience by thinking about my own feelings. Realizing that I can choose to relax a bit and see if things do change.

I haven’t had a chance to read all of the responses…but…what a wonderful community I’ve been allowed to join…
When I first read “Nothing Lasts”, I must admit it made me sad and reminded me, all too often, how i tend to hold on and fight the release of so much in my life…and hence I end up alone. YET…I am not stuck in self-pity, because there is sooo much to be grateful for, and that’s not just a cliche to me! :-) What a beautiful community… I’m looking forward to reading the full thread and everyones’ thoughtful, loving, open responses..

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