using the arrow buttons.
by clicking on the page.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider when zoomed-in.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field, and select "This Issue" or "All Issues"
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
displays sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays a slider of thumbnails. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse the full archive.
about your subscription?
Lions Roar : May 2012
SHAMBHALA SUN MAY 2012 66 as Arjuna comes to realize, as the Buddha teaches, as John Len- non imagines, then what good is it for any of us to pursue self- centered paths of happiness? While my parents were keeping up with the conservative values of a 1980s upper-middle-class Jewish neighborhood, I was studying my mind in the green walls of my uncle’s hospital. It was home. His record player, tobacco incense, and filthy water glasses were my private symbols of freedom. When Ian was fifteen, he learned that John Lennon was study- ing yoga with Mahesh Maharishi Yogi and he decided to look up the texts that the Beatles were reading, which is how he found his copy of the Gita. In 1968, the same year the Beatles were in India, Ian was making experimental films, playing piano, and ingest- ing LSD. After a year of exploring psychedelic drugs and read- ing fairly advanced philosophy, he had a psychotic break that nobody in the family remembers accurately. The story jumps ahead to him being taken to several hospitals and eventually a well-respected mental institution in Hartford, Connecticut, where my grandfather was told Ian was schizophrenic and would probably spend the rest of his life institutionalized. To be alienated is to be compartmentalized, estranged, hereti- cal. The alienated are the ones who can’t be integrated but need to be included, who we include by excluding. My mother once said the family thought more about Ian when he was away from them, making him a central figure around which the family story pivots. Through language, we cast judgment on people, lock them up, treat them, hide them, group them, exclude them. It’s as if there are “things” that exist that we don’t see we’ve created with words: homosexuals, depressives, compulsives, psychotics, neurotics, schizophrenics, suicidals. We are word addicts in our attempts to keep things at bay. The spectrum of suffering is vast because the possible scenarios our mind can enter are equally vast. Since we can only truly be cured by something through entering it fully, maybe healing and torment always go together. I was five when I decided to stop playing cards before Friday night dinner and listen to music with Ian instead. My grandfather, Ian’s father, was taking lithium for his endless depression and spending only a few hours a week with his kids and most of his time alone in his study. He died a year later. Now, just this past summer, I painted a Japanese paper scroll and glued it to the thin base of a lantern. It was the night of the Hiroshima memorial and also Obon, the traditional day in Japan to remember the dead. My teacher Roshi Enkyo O’Hara and the sangha of the Village Zendo painted lanterns with the names of those we’d loved and lost, and at sunset, we drove the lanterns out to a river near the retreat center and let them go in the slow dark currents. My lantern had my uncle’s name written across it with long brushstrokes. The one next to mine had a painting of Amy Winehouse. The river carried the glowing lanterns around the bend, and off in the distance the sky carried the long sirens from a summer training session at West Point. We chanted the Heart Sutra. Gone, gone, gone beyond. We brushed off mosqui- toes and watched each other watch the lanterns sailing off. Gone. And actively here. ♦