This life is limited. And we shall surely die… soon. And who knows what will happen upon our return. What will our vehicle of expression be like? What environment condition will we be raised in next time? Best we make use of what we have before us.
The Bodhisattvas, it is said, create good karma so that they may use this in the service of freeing all sentient beings. Maybe we should be creating karma for future lives. But then the Zen view is surely that merit is in reality no merit. So then what?
Due to a culmination of good karma we have attained a measure of intelligence, self-discipline and consciousness that means we have the ability to tread the middle way. Best we get on with it. And maybe we will get enough concentration to hold us through the bardo and into our next incarnation. Maybe. But it seems to me to be a good reason to practise.
This is not just about concentration though. This is about ones health. The longer we get to practise in this life, while we have the capability, the more chance we give ourselves next time.
So we should take as good a care of our bodies as we do of our minds. This is not being attached to the body but understanding it as a vehicle that carries us towards enlightenment. And we are thankful towards our bodies for having carried us this far.
Should we not therefore take adequate care of the bow of our body to fire the arrow of our awareness towards enlightenment?
May you awaken and be free.