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Lions Roar : September 2013
SHAMBHALA SUN SEPTEMBER 2013 46 Unscrunch Your Mind SYLVIA BOORSTEIN shares a practice she uses to smooth out life’s rough moments. It’s simple—and it makes a big difference. “Remember, Sylvia, be happy!” That’s what my metta teacher Sharon Salzberg always said to me as I left her room after my practice interviews with her thirty years ago. I usually had my hand on the doorknob, ready to leave, and it was some time before I realized that this was a practice instruction and not a quaint salutation. Nor did I realize that “Be happy!” an instruc- tion that implies choice, was an expression of the third of the Buddha’s four noble truths: that peace is possible, in this very life, indeed right now, no matter what our circumstances. I’d thought happiness meant liking something, or being pleased. But the happiness of non-suffering is better than that, and the promise that it is available, always, is the great good news of the Buddha’s enlightenment. It is the good news that wisdom reveals itself whenever the mind is balanced and alert, and that wholesome decisions can prevail in the face of challenge. ILLUSTRATIONS BY ERIC HANSON and you could use a little improvement...