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Cemetary Contemplation for COVID-19

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Cemetary Contemplation for COVID-19
Answer
4/14/20 5:36 AM
I wrote this for Phi^2, but I thought I would also share it more widely.  It is adapted from the Satipatthana Cemetary Contemplations.

As I write, I think this body of mine is of the same nature as those dying from COVID-19. Like them, it will one day struggle and die, and the life will leach away. This body of mine has not got past the condition of dying from disease, or injury, or heat, or cold, or starvation, or thirst. This body too will pass away, drain of life, bloat, dessicate, break up, and eventually crumble into dust. For some reason, I find this contemplation deeply comforting, bringing forth compassion, satisfaction, kindness and love.  From stardust to stardust.  Memento Mori.

Metta to all
Malcolm

RE: Cemetary Contemplation for COVID-19
Answer
4/14/20 6:47 AM as a reply to Not two, not one.
curious:
I wrote this for Phi^2, but I thought I would also share it more widely.  It is adapted from the Satipatthana Cemetary Contemplations.

As I write, I think this body of mine is of the same nature as those dying from COVID-19. Like them, it will one day struggle and die, and the life will leach away. This body of mine has not got past the condition of dying from disease, or injury, or heat, or cold, or starvation, or thirst. This body too will pass away, drain of life, bloat, dessicate, break up, and eventually crumble into dust. For some reason, I find this contemplation deeply comforting, bringing forth compassion, satisfaction, kindness and love.  From stardust to stardust.  Memento Mori.

Metta to all
Malcolm

I'll share my experience with COVID-19. I'm pretty healthy and had a relatively mild case - no fever, some lung pains but no real breathing difficulty and no hospitalization. Still, I had chronic fatigue and have unable to get out of bed much for the last 3 weeks. I haven't actually been tested, but it's hard to imagine it was anything else. Thankfully I seem to be recovering now. The first 2 weeks my immune system was in overdrive fighting the virus and I couldn't sleep for more than a couple of hours at a time, with hallucinations and agitation. Week 3 has been more relaxed as the virus has receded and my body gets the rest it needs.

I am very lucky that I was able to stay at home with my wife looking after me. The whole experience was much more stressful for her, having to look after me and the kids as well as do her job at the same time.

This virus is really not something you want to mess with, so please take as much care as you can to avoid getting it. Also, if you know anyone who has it and is alone or vulnerable and you are able to help them then I'm sure they would appreciate it. It must be very hard to go through this alone or without support or resources. Little things can make a big difference. We kept paying our cleaning lady even though she is no longer coming, her other employers cut her off and that's her only income now.

Apart from the strain on my family, for me personally it was not an unpleasant experience. I never seriously thought I would die, but it was a possibility and there were a few times in the night I started making lists of practical stuff my wife would need to know in case I had to go to hospital and didn't come back. It was my first brush with mortality since getting involved with spiritual practice and I have to say that it delivered the goods. Mostly there was just a sense of detached curiosity about what was going on with the body. And a renewed appreciation for being loved and fortunate in my situation.

RE: Cemetary Contemplation for COVID-19
Answer
4/14/20 6:58 AM as a reply to agnostic.
I am so happy you're getting better!

RE: Cemetary Contemplation for COVID-19
Answer
4/14/20 12:52 PM as a reply to Chris Marti.
Chris Marti:
I am so happy you're getting better!

Hear! Hear!

RE: Cemetary Contemplation for COVID-19
Answer
4/14/20 1:02 PM as a reply to Not two, not one.
Me too. Take care!

RE: Cemetary Contemplation for COVID-19
Answer
4/14/20 6:44 PM as a reply to agnostic.
agnostic:
curious:
I wrote this for Phi^2, but I thought I would also share it more widely.  It is adapted from the Satipatthana Cemetary Contemplations.

As I write, I think this body of mine is of the same nature as those dying from COVID-19. Like them, it will one day struggle and die, and the life will leach away. This body of mine has not got past the condition of dying from disease, or injury, or heat, or cold, or starvation, or thirst. This body too will pass away, drain of life, bloat, dessicate, break up, and eventually crumble into dust. For some reason, I find this contemplation deeply comforting, bringing forth compassion, satisfaction, kindness and love.  From stardust to stardust.  Memento Mori.

Metta to all
Malcolm

I'll share my experience with COVID-19. I'm pretty healthy and had a relatively mild case - no fever, some lung pains but no real breathing difficulty and no hospitalization. Still, I had chronic fatigue and have unable to get out of bed much for the last 3 weeks. I haven't actually been tested, but it's hard to imagine it was anything else. Thankfully I seem to be recovering now. The first 2 weeks my immune system was in overdrive fighting the virus and I couldn't sleep for more than a couple of hours at a time, with hallucinations and agitation. Week 3 has been more relaxed as the virus has receded and my body gets the rest it needs.

I am very lucky that I was able to stay at home with my wife looking after me. The whole experience was much more stressful for her, having to look after me and the kids as well as do her job at the same time.

This virus is really not something you want to mess with, so please take as much care as you can to avoid getting it. Also, if you know anyone who has it and is alone or vulnerable and you are able to help them then I'm sure they would appreciate it. It must be very hard to go through this alone or without support or resources. Little things can make a big difference. We kept paying our cleaning lady even though she is no longer coming, her other employers cut her off and that's her only income now.

Apart from the strain on my family, for me personally it was not an unpleasant experience. I never seriously thought I would die, but it was a possibility and there were a few times in the night I started making lists of practical stuff my wife would need to know in case I had to go to hospital and didn't come back. It was my first brush with mortality since getting involved with spiritual practice and I have to say that it delivered the goods. Mostly there was just a sense of detached curiosity about what was going on with the body. And a renewed appreciation for being loved and fortunate in my situation.
Thank you so much for sharing your experience. Looking at all the data, statistics, clinical descriptions, theories and models around the virus, it is easy to lose touch with the fact that what matters is the individual experience.

I am so happy you are getting better, and that it seems as though there might have been a few silver linings to the experience.

RE: Cemetary Contemplation for COVID-19
Answer
4/14/20 6:45 PM as a reply to Not two, not one.
curious:
I wrote this for Phi^2, but I thought I would also share it more widely.  It is adapted from the Satipatthana Cemetary Contemplations.

As I write, I think this body of mine is of the same nature as those dying from COVID-19. Like them, it will one day struggle and die, and the life will leach away. This body of mine has not got past the condition of dying from disease, or injury, or heat, or cold, or starvation, or thirst. This body too will pass away, drain of life, bloat, dessicate, break up, and eventually crumble into dust. For some reason, I find this contemplation deeply comforting, bringing forth compassion, satisfaction, kindness and love.  From stardust to stardust.  Memento Mori.

Metta to all
Malcolm

Again, thank you so much for this.