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Tears of beauty, tears of gratitude きれいな涙、感謝の涙

My friend Tomohiro Takei posted a message on Facebook that moved me deeply. I have translated it along with his responses to the comments by others. It provides comfort to me as I face the losses, expected and unexpected, that are a necessary part of living. The original Japanese follows.


This year the loss of three family members have moved me into the realm of enlightenment. Death is always near us and is nothing to be feared. Strangely I don't feel it is a separation or an ending.

Burning incense I give a message of gratitude. When I look at my grandmother's photo, it seems like I hear her voice say, "Wake up! Get going!" I answer in my heart, "Yes!" and renew my resolve to fulfill my sense of purpose in my work in this world. I realize how my grandmother's suffering and survival through a difficult time, has given strength to my life. I will strive to live as if the baton of life has been passed on.

If we can separate from attachment, bitter medicine is felt as no more than a wave of the heart. To say it an extreme way, death may be a sad thing, but in a way I can't understand, I shed tears, but they are beautiful tears, grateful tears. I wish to go on living, cherishing each and every moment.




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