We don’t know who we are

Perhaps the deepest reason why we are afraid of death is because we don’t know who we are. We believe in a personal, unique and separate identity but if we dare to examine it, we find that this identity depends entirely on an endless collection of things to prop it up

our name, our biography, our partners, family, home, job, friends, credit card. It is on their fragile and transient support that we rely for our security. So when they are all taken away. Will we have any idea of who we really are?

Without our familiar props we are faced with just ourselves, a person we do not know, an unnerving stranger with whom we have been living all the time but we never really wanted to meet. Isn’t that why we have tried to fill every moment of time with noise and activity. However boring or trivial, to ensure that we are never left in silence with the stranger on our own?

Sogyal Rinpoche

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