“External expectations, all pride, fear of embarrassment or failure—these things fall away in the face of death.”

Via
on Aug 26, 2011
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Steve Jobs’ philosophy on life, and death. Quotes.

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Update: Steve Jobs has passed away.

“Almost everything–all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure–these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important.
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Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.
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You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”
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Photo: Steve Jobs, two days after resignation. Via Reddit.

Our coverage here. Videos, images.

In the Buddhist tradition, we do tonglen for those who may be suffering. Still, impermanence is fundamental to this life, and death may come at any moment. For any of us.

In all traditions, we give thanks to those who’ve inspired. While, even now, we can not gloss over reality—that Apple is far from eco-responsible, and (unlike Gates and his billions) gives nothing to charity (per Jobs), and doesn’t work with fair labor—it has in countless other ways innovated and trailblazed and made uncounted connections and other inspirations possible.

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“No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share.

No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.

Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice.

And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

~Steve Jobs

2005 Stanford commencement speech

Bonus: a Silicon Valley FOM told me this was worth watching.

It’s long; will watch now, join me:

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7,104 views

About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now elephantjournal.com & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. elephantjournal.com | facebook.com/elephantjournal | twitter.com/elephantjournal | facebook.com/waylonhlewis | twitter.com/waylonlewis | Google+ For more: publisherelephantjournalcom

Comments

33 Responses to ““External expectations, all pride, fear of embarrassment or failure—these things fall away in the face of death.””

  1. Sarah says:

    ok please tell me why you are posting photos of a sick looking man and headlining "lookie here at the bad looking guy"?

  2. Earl Long says:

    Yes, not a good picture of Steve Jobs and it's apparent that he is not steady on his feet. Too bad.

  3. Cara Mia says:

    I agree. Really poor taste.

  4. KJo says:

    Have compassion. If we can support him, at least not trash him.

  5. elephantjournal says:

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    Darrin Buehler A great example of a mind that is precise and clear, even when the body is frail. Blessings on Steve Jobs, not just for being a pioneer, but for modeling such grace.
    35 minutes ago · UnlikeLike · 8 peopleLoading…
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    Laree Sanchez Blessings on Steve Jobs….
    33 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
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    Stephen Greg Legat I have had cancer twice. Had both chemo and radiation. It's a long, hard fight that not everyone wins. Steve Jobs has fought well. If it is his time soon, I would like to tell him thanks- thanks for shaking off the nausea and fatigue, and living his life. I wish him peace, I wish him rest.
    32 minutes ago · LikeUnlike · 5 peopleLoading…
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    Tamara McMahan Moravec Looks like he needs prayers…
    30 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
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    Darrin Buehler Beautiful, Stephen. You are.
    30 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
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    Adenia Linker may we all view his suffering and collectively give a deep breath BACK
    29 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
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    Jessica Selig Do you realize your headline for this picture says: "Wow of the day. One of the best videos I've ever seen. Share with your children:"?
    21 minutes ago · LikeUnlike · 2 peopleLoading…
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    Natasha Webb Calvert Grace, indeed! Thank you Mr. Jobs
    19 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
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    Jessica Selig Also, did he release this picture of himself? If not, seems like it could be an invasion of his privacy and may not be something that ought to be spread around.
    18 minutes ago · LikeUnlike · 1 personLoading…
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    Tracy Patterson Prayers for you and your family Mr.Jobs.GodSpeed
    15 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
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    Eve Lee I don't doubt he's very sick, but that picture seems to have been touched by the Photoshop smudge tool. Look at his cheek and chin. You can practically trace the brushstrokes.
    6 minutes ago · LikeUnlike
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    elephantjournal.com Jessica, if you clicked the blog before commenting, read his quotes, and watched his video, you'd get why it's worth sharing. As for his privacy, I agree, but he's worked publicly for years with cancer, and I regard death not as a failure but as a helpful reminder. That's the opportunity in this moment: to consider, as he said, “Almost everything–all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure–these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important.

    Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.

    You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”

  6. KJo says:

    I mean, "If we can't support him, at least not trash him."

  7. Suri kate says:

    Its so hard to watch how such a charismatic man disolves into nothingness…like a shooting star in the night sky…really really sad and i dont even know the guy …great video ,almost made me cry.

  8. elephantjournal says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  9. Peter says:

    This photo is Photoshopped. Please do not post this as an accurate photo of Mr. Jobs. Falsehoods and gossip are not Wholesome Speech.

  10. Keren says:

    In the autumn of 1999, during one of Yogi Bhajan’s meditation classes in Espanola, he requested that Dev Suroop Kaur write a song. He specifically requested that it include the line “Don’t cry for me children of Sikh Dharma” and that it be written in the past tense as if he had already passed. He asked that the song celebrate his life, not mourn his death. His intention was that we be comforted, uplifted and joyful with his passing and that his life, our mission and our future be celebrated. When we played the song for him, his words were “It’s perfect. Don’t change a thing.” You can read the lyrics and listen to the song here: http://devsuroopkaur.bandcamp.com/track/a-masters

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