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Lions Roar : May 2018
back to sleep. I get up a couple hours later and meditate again for another twenty minutes. As the sun’s light finds its way into our kitchen, I make my daughter’s lunch, cutting the carrots and apples one by one. I should eat my organic flax cereal without reading, but I don’t. This is my time to be with A Buddhist’s Bible by Dwight Goddard, digesting the truth of suffering while chomping on flakes drenched in coco- nut milk. I drive my son to school and listen intently to his reasons for why Pluto is his favorite planet. I tell him Earth is my favorite because he lives there. My habit mind used to rule the car. I’d get in, plug in my phone, and turn on the radio— NPR, sports talk, the Ramones—and the sound would take over, my brain bombarded by Afghanistan, NBA salaries, lyrics. I wanna be sedated. At red lights, I’d send a furtive text message to my wife about a kid drop-off or dinner or what- ever else. The distractions didn’t end, but I’ve stopped the noise. Now I just sit, back out of the driveway, drive. So, the commute is totally different. I see faces, people in sleeping bags on sidewalks, kids laughing and walking to school, dozens of little glowing rectangles of cellphones cradled in pedestrians’ hands, the grey sky above. At intersections, I meditate, inhaling and exhaling—the red lights acting like little mechanical bodhisattvas to pause me, keep me awake, keep me alive. Work is busy, but I do my best to pause before speaking, to look into the eyes of each person. I meditate at my desk for a few minutes each day. The meditation makes meetings slow down, reminds me of who I am, and of the body I inhabit. I don’t put email on my phone. Walking is for walking, not glancing down at a screen. Early evening, I arrive home, make the phone disappear, and bring pres- ence to my family. At dinner, everyone shares one thing about their day. I listen. LION’S ROAR | MAY 2018 24