The First Noble Truth

The first noble truth, according to the Buddha, is that the suffering of birth, old age, sickness and death is unavoidable.

In honor of Marilyn Monroe’s death which was fifty years ago today and inspired by the picture above, I have been reading Walt Whitman. Having never read Whitman before, I am surprised by how sexy his writing is. He is physical, earthy, and completely accessible to me, one who has barely read any poetry. It makes sense to me that Marilyn would enjoy Whitman and his ability to bring us into the muck and goo of human existence.

Come lovely and soothing death,
Undulate round the world, serenely arriving, arriving,
In the day, in the night, to all, to each,
Sooner or later delicate death.

Leaves of Grass, Walt Whitman  1881

Breathing in, I touch the fear and tenderness of facing death. Breathing out, I send out comfort and courage to any one of us facing death on this day as Marilyn did fifty years ago.

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