Recently, I was asked by my brother why I was interested in Buddhism. After stumbling around for a while, I decided I needed to come up with an “elevator speech” explaining my interest. Actually, I have come up with two: one for the first floor and one for the fifth floor.
First floor elevator speech: Buddhism is a way of letting go of my attachment to the self I used to be.
Fifth floor elevator speech: Buddhism is about ending suffering and finding peace. I have recently learned from Buddhism that concerning oneself with the past leads to depression and that worrying about the future leads to anxiety. In fact, I am in good health, sleep well, and enjoying life to the fullest. I am living in, what Buddhism refers to as, “being here now.” I am no longer the person I once was. I have suffered terrific losses, but I have also come to an understanding that much of what I thought of as my “life story” was illusory. I am not any one thing or any one story. I am not my past. I am not my future. I am alive in the present moment and that brings me peace.