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LIVING THREE TEMPORAL STATES OF EXISTENCE


Buddhism teaches us that our life is not limited to only this world, but extends across three temporal states of existence: the past, present, and future. This is precisely why it is important to live the present to the fullest. When we do so, we manifest the potential of our past, and the way we live the present also secures our future peace and security.

Losing sight of the fact that our life spans three temporal states of existence deprives us of a bearing on the purpose of our lives, and how we should live them.

When this happens, we end up seeking momentary sensual pleasures, chasing after material wealth, and wasting resources without hesitation by living a way that is destructive to the environment. We fall prey to a lifestyle in which we ourselves slam the door shut on our own futures.


It is said that living things have a propensity to push the evolutionary development of their unique characteristics to excess, and the result can sometimes be fatal for the species. Organizations and societies are no different. Everyone knows they must stop things in their tracks before reaching such a point, but it become impossible to actually bring things to a halt.


There is an urgent need to take fully to heart this understanding that our life extends across the three temporal states of existence.


Nikkyo Niwano

From Kaisozuikan 9 (Kosei Publishing Co.), pp.97-97

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