Because the area is full of Buddhists, most people stayed positive and were not shocked by the realization that death is inevitable. The earthquake was actually a great Buddhist teaching that everything is an illusion and things are never as they seem to be. Like a rope on the ground can be mistaken for a snake, as a reflection of the moon in a mud puddle is not the actual moon, the ground and the buildings that we live in are not as safe and immoveable as we may think. This is a disturbing revelation that can be very unsettling especially while the earth kept moving for days. The Buddha also said “all component things are destined to fall apart.” Of course, we can all die at any moment, but I think we are all afraid to suffer a painful death crushed by fallen buildings or to be trapped for days before expiring slowly.
–Shiv Mirabito, in the Woodstock Times. The Woodstock, New York-based anthropologist, poet, artist and publisher survived the recent earthquake in Nepal.