So many things crossing my mind and i am so grateful, cause it means i still have one!
and what is that MIND…..mind-body, the brain, the aggregate of central nervous system pathways, the muscles and tissues in which and upon which those nerves operate….the chemicals and electrical impulses that make up the vast messaging system which coordinates action and thought and vice versa….thought is the action of the brain, the action and interaction of chemicals AND stimuli.
Dogen says,- to study the mind is to study the self, to study the self is to forget the self. To forget the self is to perceive the self in all things.-
Can one be a buddhist without a fully functioning mind….i can be in a wheelchair and be buddhist, but can i have advanced alzheimers, or vascular dementia and be a buddhist…? which is to ask really, can i have a practice and alzheimer’s too? The question is NOT, can i be a buddha and have alz or vascular dementia too? A prior question might be…are people with advanced dementia of any kind, anything at all but a skin bag?
I would say this is my koan right now, but that would mean it is a burning question that i must answer…and i am not sure i will ever have an answer…..nor am i sure that even if i do answer it, even for a moment, that it matters ….why would it not matter??? or maybe better to ask, to whom would it matter and why?
One thing i know , right now , and for sure…..with a mind-body and mind-awareness i can have a practice; which right now means being MINDFUL, not only as a coping mechanism for functioning, but as a way of being able to operate with compassion for myself and the world.Right now, pay attention! Right now, and now and now!
I have found some links by plugging -Buddhism and Dementia-into google. This is one that i am exploring now-
perhaps you will find it interesting.