In this dangerous and unhealthy world, it would be quite an achievement for someone who is fifty years old today to live to be eighty. The lives of most fifty-year-olds are already more than half over, and the older we get, the quicker time seems to pass. The thirty years we imagine we have left will pass in the blink of an eye. For a start, we sleep for about eight hours a night, which accounts for ten of those thirty years.
Let’s assume that watching one movie a day and eating three times takes about four hours. We also gossip and catch up with friends, check the football results, do housework, pay bills, keep in touch with family and exercise, all of which probably eats up about two hours a day. And of course, most of us work for seven or eight hours a day.
Therefore, if we fifty-year-olds are lucky, we have less than two hours a day, or about two and a half years, left to live. And a great deal of that will be taken up with paranoia, anxiety, self-doubt and so on. So the bottom line here is there is very little time left for practice.
Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
from the book Not for Happiness: A Guide to the So-Called Preliminary Practices
Read a random quote or see all quotes by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche.
Further quotes from the book Not for Happiness:
- As they truly are
- To reject your aggression is a weakness
- Spiritual practice is like riding a bicycle
- Maintaining a strong grip on the habits
- The signs of progress
- Rip that ego apart
- No substitute for being guided by a guru
- Wealth is contentment
- It’s all a matter of motivation
- No end to samsara’s sufferings
- The merit of maintaining mindfulness
- What Is Bodhichitta
- What is merit
- Our fundamental problem
- Adapting the Dharma
- Altruism bolsters self-confidence
- Nothing genuinely works in samsara
- Relative and absolute truth
- For the sake of all other beings
- Obstacles Create Fertile Ground for Practice