India factory fire: Karmapa’s message

December 8, 2019

Thaye Dorje, His Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa, shares the following message of condolence concerning the fatal factory fire in New Delhi, India, this morning:

Dear dharma friends

At least 43 lives were lost in a factory fire in Delhi, which broke out about 5am this morning.

All of the victims of this tragedy were men, most of whom were sleeping in the factory preparing for labour. Some would be waking up to make toys for the festive season ahead. Some would be waking up to make jackets and other clothes. But none of them would wake again in this life.

None of us know what is around the corner. None of us know when impermanence will strike. One moment, we are laughing with our loved ones, and the next moment, we may be struck by sickness or death. These phenomena are not to be feared, for they are inevitable aspects of living in a conditioned world. Everything that rises must fall. While death and impermanence are not to be feared, they are to be understood.

When we really understand the nature of impermanence, we experience every moment in good health as a precious gift. Every smile and laugh shared with a loved one is a treasured moment. Every day is an opportunity, a responsibility, for loving kindness and benefiting other sentient beings.

Therefore, let us waste no time. Let us pray for all of the victims, the injured, and their loved ones. Let us meditate on the nature of impermanence and live each moment with the deep understanding that everything in this conditioned world is subject to change. Let us use this moment, this day, for compassion and wisdom.

With prayers

Thaye Dorje

His Holiness the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa