Why am i sad at the pope's death?

edited April 2005 in The CenterTao Lounge
Each week we address one chapter of the Tao Te Ching. Chapter 68 was originally featured on the 1st week in May.

Note: The Tao Te Ching can be obscure, especially if you think you're supposed to understand what it's saying! We find it easier and more instructive to simply contemplate how the chapter resonates with your personal experience. Becoming more aware at this fundamental level simplifies life. This approach conforms to the view that true knowing lies within ourselves. Thus, when a passage in the scripture resonates, you've found your inner truth. The same applies for when it evokes a question; questions are the grist for self realization.

Chapter 68
One who excels as a warrior does not appear formidable;
One who excels in fighting is never roused in anger;
One who excels in defeating his enemy does not join issue;
One who excels in employing others humbles himself before them.

This is known as the virtue of non-contention;
This is known as making use of the efforts of others;
This is known as matching the sublimity of heaven.


  • edited December 1969
    As a Buddhist I should know better, know that life and death are just man made concepts, all part of the wheel and such...and i think the Roman Catholic Church is the world's biggest cult / mafia. ..So why should I be mourning the death of the head of it?
    Yet I've had tears in my eyes several times this week, watching the coverage of the funeral. I liked the man even if I detested his message...maybe it's just that he was in so long, part of my youth gone, something like that...every man's death diminshes me...wish i could feel that way more often...and change scares me, though again I know that change is the onlty constant in this world...

    anyway, has anyone else ever done this, mourn the end of someone or something that you didnt even know you cared about?
    or am i just an emotional, sentimental fool?
  • edited December 1969
    its not foolish to care :)
  • edited December 1969
    I have. when the bonfire collapsed here at Texas A&M killing 12 students in 1999 I cried for long periods afterwards. I didn't know any of the kids, and I guess it was the loss of those so young and in the prime of life that bothered me.

    I was working on drainage rehab project for the city and took a sledge hammer to the parking lot we were going to dig up. I was in a ditch so the asphault was about waist high. The crew leader asked me to stop because we would use a backhoe to dig it up. I just looked at him and went back to smashing the asphault using every bit of anger I had in me. I wasn't wearing gloves and went at it until I could lift the sledge and the crew leader took it from me.

    As to the Pope, I didn't feel anything.
  • edited December 1969
    I often fear i'm easily maniopulated by the media or by the presentation of something. I'm very emotional, easily affected by sentiment, nostalgia...I cry at commercials...sad movies destroy me for days...yet i seldom cry when a loved one dies. Why do i mourn those I dont know, or at a fictional situation, yet stay dry eyed at the loss of one close...In real life, I cry more from fear than sadness...am i beyond 'real' sadness?
  • edited December 1969
    I hear you Buddy. I didn't cry at my own Grandmas' funerals, but I cried when Princess Diana, John F. Kennedy Jr. and his mother, Captain Kangaroo, and Mr. Roger's died. I got to meet "The Captain", Bob Keeshan, at a book signing a few years before he died, and had my picture taken with him. I'm still a kid at heart. Yes, we mourn because we are losing something familiar to us, even though we don't know them.

    While my husband is Catholic, I'm not, so the Pope's death had no significance, no meaning, no sorrow for me. In fact, I felt a little guilty that it didn't. Instead, I pondered on where all those people, went to the bathroom! Were there port-a-johns in St. Peter's Square?
  • edited December 1969
    'The Lord will provide'...they were ass to elbow for several hours, bet there was a lot of squatting going on...yikes! seldom hear about bathroom habits in the bible or many other historical books-where did people go in those days...? I heard stores and such quit letting the pilgrims in because they were damaging the facilities...they were asking residents to let folks stay in their houses-yeah right, I'd be at my front door with a shotgun...
    anyway, I hope it's more orderly when I die and the crowds gather...
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