Let's try to be more patient

What a week it’s been in the news.

Most of us have heard the tragic events:

A young Bendigo girl’s life snatched in a freak accident when a tree falls on her, walking with her mother on a calm, sunny afternoon.

Incidents such as these can strike deeply into our core and unsettle us

A 26-year-old man missing, feared drowned in a boat mishap at Waranga Basin.

The shocking discovery of human remains in the boot of a car, which leads to the charging of a Wellsford man with murder.

And as if that weren’t enough, a double-fatal car crash at Glenalbyn, where a witness told police the vehicles had been overtaking in a “leap-frogging” manner before two vehicles collided and crashed.

Lives lost in many different ways.

The Bendigo region may be “central” but it’s not used to being quite so central in the state and national news bulletins.

Incidents such as these can strike deeply into our core and unsettle us with the apparent random nature of things when life changes in a millisecond. 

Especially in the tragic case of four-year-old Patiya and the tree tragedy, for many surely a case of “There but for the grace of God, go I”.

Such accidents expose sharply the vulnerability and inherent risk of living.

But risk is part of life and to live fully we have to embrace that fact, unpalatable though it may be.

Perhaps we can practice a little of the Buddhist approach shown in the Karen new year ceremony in Bendigo on Saturday.

There, the Venerable Ashin Moonie extolled the gathering to practise lovingkindness and patience.

Because you don’t know when it may be the last time you see a person.

“If you can’t be patient, you will never have peace,” he said.

It is not always easy to practise patience. 

But there may be fewer accidents if we all try. Especially on the roads.

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