Tuesday, March 6, 2007


This life of separateness may be compared to a dream, a phantasm, a bubble, a shadow, a drop of dew, a flash of lightning.

Buddha -480 B.C.

Of all the similes that convey the heart attack experience, to me it was what I imagined it would be like to be struck by lightning. It is sudden, it is intense, and it is absolutely frightening.

Being struck by the heart attack demolished any illusions that I was in control of my future, and provided overwhelming evidence that there were forces that could eradicate me in a flash. After the heart attack, I constantly missed the illusion that my future extended indefinitely, and the illusion that the world was a safe place.

The heart attack increased my feeling of separateness. I felt isolated; the rest of the world was going on as usual, and I was left lying in bed, looking out the window, trying to come to grips with what had happened. I could resign myself to my own death, but not to leaving my wife and child alone.

Trying to think that I was One with the Universe was no solace at all; this was just another philosophical Hakuna Matata: Don’t worry, be enlightened.

A flash of lightning split my Universe.


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