I was out of town this week and got to spend some great time on the beach. Hearing the waves and smelling the ocean is always one of my favorite things to do. There’s always the opportunity to take the time to think and reflect as you walk along the water, and of course, some great meditation to be had in the early morning hours!

Impermanence: The Foundation of all Teaching

On one of my walks, I started paying attention to the footprints in front of me. They were so clear and defined that I could tell that the person walking had flat feet, which leg bore the most weight, and I could get a pretty good idea of the person’s height and weight from their spacing and depth.

But then, a wave would come and wash over them. If the wave was big enough, they totally disappeared. If the wave was smaller, it would slowly degrade them, and the second wave would wipe them out completely. It was an amazing thing to watch.

The same held true for the sand castles that were so diligently created at low tide. Their “moats” would eventually be overwhelmed and the castle would dissolve back into the sand when hit with enough water. Through watching this over and over, the idea of “impermanence” kept rolling around in my head.

Impermanence, is of the essential doctrines and a part of three marks of existence in Buddhism. The doctrine asserts that all of conditioned existence, without exception, is “transient, evanescent, inconstant”.

The Gold Floor” Podcast

In Buddhism, the nature of “impermanence” is really the foundation of all teaching. The Zen Teachings podcast, “The Gold Floor” is centered around the idea of impermanence, which drives the young Buddha to leave his palace on a quest for enlightenment. His discoveries dealt with this notion of repetitive cycles throughout all of time, with no beginning and no end.

Sandcastles and footprints washing away are one thing…

Keep in mind that this cycle can cause us pain. It is our struggle to keep things as they are; change is difficult. Since this is our struggle, it’s our disappointment that causes so much turmoil and heartache in our lives. There is no doubt that it is painful.

Sandcastles and footprints washing away are one thing, but what about our own aging and mortality? What about the relationships that change over time and the people who were once so invaluable now gone?

Finding a Deeper Reason for Meditation

As a martial artist, I have had a few injuries in my years of practice. Every injury is accompanied by the realization that I am mortal, susceptible to being hurt, and won’t be able to do the things I do, in exactly the same way, forever. That can be a tough pill to swallow.

Injuries are great teachers in that way. They allow us to view our practice from a different perspective and reevaluate what it is that we want out of life. If one only practices for the punching, for instance, then it’s a sport. Once that specific thing is taken away, you will lose interest. This holds true with everything in life.

  • If you have a person in your life ONLY because of their looks, then when those fade, so will your interest.
  • If you do something ONLY because you’re the best at it, then someone better will cause you to find a new hobby.

We have to find the deeper, truer reasons for the feelings we have and the things that we do.

Finding an Anchor

In some way, we have to find the path that’ll take us to the place where we can root ourselves to that which is never changing. Some people will say that is God or the Holy Spirit. Some will find another anchor completely. Whatever your position, then you have an anchor.

If you do not believe in a higher power, in some fashion or another, then you probably feel a periodic emptiness and occasional experiences of “not caring,” because nothing means anything anyway.

The second option is an incorrect view. I do not care what version of a higher power you believe in, but there must be something.

“Even if your higher power is your closer connection to the world around you, opened up through your meditation and spiritual exploration, you will have a more fulfilled life.” – Rudy Makupson


If we cannot deepen our understanding and connect with the world around us, then meditation is just sitting and relaxing. To truly dive into searching for meaning and “oneness” is probably the most important journey that any of us can take. And as I’ve said before, “It is different for all of us”.

The path for you may not work for me and vice versa.

Believe in Something

To be perfectly clear: I am not advocating Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Islam, Buddhism or any other religion. I am simply suggesting that you must believe in SOMETHING in order to achieve your higher purpose in this world.

Truly anchoring to that which is never changing can be a near-impossible task, but I promise you it is not your income, your new car, husband or wife. All of those things can change, and they likely will. You cannot plan adequately for a fire as your home burns around you. Take this time (I hope it is a “peak”) and practice your meditation.

Practice your connection.

Discover who you truly are.

Contact Us

Have any questions? We are here to answer them.

If you have any questions about our teachings, our subscription, or general comments about our program, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us by clicking the button below.

Send Us An Email