The purpose of this meditation is to generate a strong fear of taking rebirth in the lower realms.

I began with the appropriate preparations for meditation and then started by thinking about how the karma that has not ripened on me in this life will surely ripen on me in future lives. Since most of my actions are ignorant and harmful, it is likely that I will take rebirth in the lower realms unless I purify my negativities beforehand.

Today I might find it unbearable if I was called a ‘stupid cow’, but what will I do if tomorrow I am born as a cow, or a fish?

I contemplated this point, and my future lives (which normally seem so far away) seemed to feel very close indeed. Even tomorrow I might take rebirth as a helpless cow or fish! I began to feel very uncomfortable at the notion, and as I repeated the contemplation the feeling grew into fear. Once the fear was strong I focused on it.


May all living beings find meaningful fear of rebirth in lower realms, and take actions now to purify their negative karma.

Practice in the Meditation Break

I will try to keep my fear keen.