Buddhism: what to do when your child sees roadkill.

Via Waylon Lewis
on Aug 13, 2011
get elephant's newsletter

Moments of Sadness inspire Life & the Buddhist mantra Om Vajrasattva Hum.

Buddhism: How to use Negative Circumstances to Wake up.

Buddhist Mindfulness Habit: Roadkill.

Death Comes without Warning.

The Vajrasattva Mantra: “mind protection.”

Momentary sadness reminds us that life is fragile, precious, worth living fully and properly.

By dimitridf

When I was a child, and I saw a dead animal on the side or a road, or wherever, I was sad. It was like the world was happy and fun and then….wrong. My mom stepped in and assured me that this was the nature of life, that it was okay…not only okay but a reminder of how wonderful life was, and that we should be careful and enjoy it. She taught me that if I wanted to say a little prayer for the dead squirrel or what-have-you, I could say the Buddhist “Vajrasattva mantra”:

Om Vajrasattva Hum

with the wish that the animal have a okay peaceful time being dead and that it might have a happy future rebirth.

Now, though I don’t believe in reincarnation (Buddhists aren’t theistic, we aren’t supposed to believe in anything we can’t experience, the Buddha talked about how even what he said shouldn’t be taken on faith, and that many of the Great Questions were in fact unimportant) I still say a little prayer. It helps to turn that still-disturbing moment into a moment, an occasion or opportunity for remembering the Four Reminders.

So whatever reminder you recite, it doesn’t matter. But let the message be one of simple, straightforward compassion and reminding oneself that life is like a bubble—perfect, rainbow-colored, and then, suddenly, >>>>gone<<<<.


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 | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


6 Responses to “Buddhism: what to do when your child sees roadkill.”

  1. Oh. Wait. I forgot the 😉

    The 😉 lets everyone know that you're just being witty/sarcastic/playful.

    The 😉 is the online equivalent of the Catholic confessional booth.

    All hail the 😉

  2. mary fitzsimons says:

    i check to see if its fresh.
    especially if its pheasant, or skin-able, also must be fresh, as well as a few phet, hiks

  3. Ice says:

    Unparalleled accuracy, unequivocal caltriy, and undeniable importance!

  4. […] about what it means that someone is drunk and why drunk driving is bad. We’ve talked about death. We’ve talked about Cancer. We’ve talked about lots of things that initially made me […]