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Lions Roar : July 2009
SHAMBHALA SUN jULy 2009 89 We can’t be sure what’s down the road. But at Prentiss Smith & Company we believe that a disciplined investment approach, and attention to each client’s individual situation, can take an investor a long way. For a brochure that includes our performance record please call. TOLL FREE 800 -223-7851 The Long Run. PRENTISS SMITH & COMPANY, INC. Portfolio management for the socially conscious investor since 1982 Offices in Brattleboro & Burlington, Vermont • www.socialinvesting.com Want to meditate but don’t quite know how? This book is made for you! Written with a lucid, direct, yet enthralling elegance by Justin O’Brien, (Swami Jaidev). It discloses the heart of the matter with down-to-earth practicality so you can get right down to practice. Yes InTernaTIonal PublIshers Superconscious Meditation easily teaches you how to meditate. “ ... for those who seek freedom and the truth of life.” —Swami Hari of the Himalayas— www.yespublishers.com / 651-645-6808 but these concerns may have more to do with self-image and pride than a loss of innate dignity. perhaps such concerns are best dealt with by identifying less with the egocentric concerns of an illusory self and more with the inalienable dignity of one’s buddhanature. there may be a lesson here we can learn from the life of the Buddha. in the last months of his life, the Buddha suffered from a painful terminal illness. he knew the end was near, but fought the illness and carried on as long as he could. if ever there was a case for cutting life short, surely this was it: he could have avoided any further pain and entered nirvana immediately with no ill consequences of any kind. so why didn’t he? we can never know for sure, but perhaps it has something to do with his own basic teachings. in the four noble truths, death is identified as the prob- lem, rather than the solution. Death (often symbolized by mara) is mentioned in the first noble truth, suffering, while the cessation of suffering, nirvana, is the third. to see death as a solution to suf- fering, as in the case of assisted suicide, gets things back to front, because choosing death only gets you deeper into the problem. for the Buddha to have chosen death would have been an existen- tial choice that undermined his life’s work. it would have meant embracing mara, as opposed to vanquishing him. for those without religious beliefs, for whom death means annihilation (such as west’s parents), suicide may seem a rational choice. for Buddhists, however, death would not appear to be the recommended solution. ♦