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 : November 2009
SHAMBHALA SUN NOVEMBER 2009 64 or biking—to suck more oxygen from the air—which lubricates their joints, shovels fuel into their cells, and rouses their dozy senses. some of us migrate south like elk or hummingbirds. Right around Charleston, south Carolina, morning begins to change its mood, winter brings a chill but doesn’t roll up your socks, and the sun boils over the horizon a moment sooner, because the planet swells a smidgeon there, just enough for pecan light at dawn, snapdragons and camellias too dew-sodden to float scent, and birds tuning their pipes, right on schedule, for a chatterbox chorale. by January, the northern bird chorus has flown to cucharacha- ville—or, if you prefer it anglicized, palmetto-bug-ville—where swarming insects and other low life feed flocks of avian visitors. There they join many of the upright apes they left behind: “snow birds” who also migrate to the land of broiling noons. We may travel far in winter, but our birds travel with us. painting its own time zone, its own climate, dawn is a land of petrified forests and sleeping beauties, when dry leaves, hardened by frozen dew, become ghost hands, and deer slouch through the woods, waiting for their food to defrost. part of the great parentheses of our lives, dawn summons us to a world alive and death-defying, when the deepest arcades of life and matter beckon. Then, as if a lamp were switched on in a dark room, nature grows crisply visible, including our own nature, ghostly hands, and fine sediment of days. After Hours Waiting for dawn, much is sensible, if not visible. To us, any- way. some other creatures—bats, moths, fireflies, owls, raccoons, cicadas, spiders, mountain lions—get by just fine. For me, dawn begins before the sun and below the soil, and extends up through sky and weather to the canopy of stars. The visible stars that is. so much surrounds us that we can’t see. Life on other planets, but also the missing matter in the universe. Computations show that stars, planets, galaxies, and all the rest of the visible matter make up only four percent of what actually exists. Where is the rest, the so-called dark matter and, even stranger, dark energy? A yard or street is partly full of the invisible weight of the universe. At the doorway of the senses, the self chances upon the world. yet, for the most part, we live a life of surfaces; otherwise we’d buckle under an avalanche of sensations. When we turn on the radio in the morning and hear static or interference as we switch between channels, do we need to know we’re divining lightning strikes on other continents and the hissing death throes of galaxies? probably not. but, when we do, the aperture of the mind widens as it travels to distant continents and galaxies and back again. After the black dawn, the white dawn arrives laced with pink fire. Dawn light brings a clarity that’s missing from noon glare or smoggy sunset, however pretty their filters. sitting on a rusty wrought-iron chair, I turn my thoughts to the beauty of rust, which dissects metal so meticulously, creating freeform bronzes, brown bubbling sandwiches, gritty red icons, supine statuettes, ragged perforations, flaking black-orange memorials to time. We underestimate rust, which may well have sponsored all of life on earth. In the explicit light, rust declares its past. some think it’s easy for life to emerge, for primitive cells like bacteria to form anywhere in the universe. For instance, in the deep ocean trenches, several miles below the sunlit waves, hy- perthermophiles bloom—hardy bacteria that breathe iron and thrive in water hot enough to sterilize surgery tools. hugging the scalding vents, they reproduce in boiling water and can abide at 266 degrees Fahrenheit where minerals abound. Of the many heat-loving microbes haunting the deep ocean, Geobacter met- allreducens can even generate its own electricity. All you really need is rocks and water, and everything else happens by itself. When iron sulfide (rust) from earth’s hot core meets cold water, the shock creates honeycombed chimneys where the first living cells could have grown. subject oxygen and carbon dioxide—so plentiful on the young earth—to heat and high pressure, with rust as a catalyst, and a metabolism naturally ensues. The earliest microbes would have left those cradles to colonize the land. We still carry some of that primordial iron in our cells today. Rust is a very slow fire, and like fire it releases energy as it devours. It also gains in size, prying apart steel in a