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Lions Roar : September 2011
SHAMBHALA SUN SEPTEMBER 2011 70 In your view, how often do people need to practice? Some people have to practice a lot—morning, middle of the day, evening. Some people can practice once a day. Traditionally, when you’re starting out, you practice twice a day—when rising in the morning and before retiring in the evening. When I was having the hardest time of my life, I was practicing for four hours a day. And I saw how it was working. My reactions were spot on and I knew that was because of my practice, because my normal reactions weren’t that way. Why do you consider it important to have a CD that combines Buddhist and Christian prayers? The answer to this question is unity. Years ago, when I was on tour in New Zealand, I was given a purple book that I couldn’t stand the color of, but somehow I kept it and opened it after my tour. It explained that God is within us and it doesn’t matter what your religion is. Whatever words you use, the results are the same. If you are in another country and you go to their medita- tion area to pray with them and you do your own prayer and they do theirs, that’s fine. The CD Beyond is to remind people or to educate people that God is inside them. How you tap into God is your decision. Whether you meditate or whether you become a Christian, it’s up to you. Beyond is an invitation to open the heart for all reli- gions and to become united. How did you get involved with Beyond? I was invited to get involved in the project by Regula Curti, born Christian in Switzerland, and Dechen Shak-Dagsay, born Bud- dhist in Tibet. I thought it was a good idea because I was already on the journey of unity, of thinking about how there are reli- gious wars and how someone has to help people know that God is to be found within, so that peace and harmony will evolve. Regula and Dechen and I started to chant together and we discovered unity on a deeper level, more energetically and spiri- tually. The thought of unity in prayer became, for all three of us, a field to explore musically. We hope that everybody realizes that the system—the system of God, of contacting God, of being a better person, and of correcting your life conditions—is within you. What we are trying to say is that it doesn’t matter what holy words you chant, what matters is that you do it with all your involvement—physical, mental, spiritual. It doesn’t matter if Regula sings Ave Maria and Dechen sings the prayer for Tara and I sing the Lotus Sutra. Prayer is prayer. What’s important is doing it and not worrying about how others are praying. On Beyond you say, “When you go beyond that’s where you find true love.” What does that mean to you? What is true love? There are many different forms of love, but true love is some- thing that transcends doubt, something that is not judgmental, something that is openhearted and accepting. We are not talking The Sky BenchTM *Easy to assume meditation posture even with limited flexibility. *Comes apart for easy travel. *Full line of meditation seats, and eco friend and eco friendly furniture. 1-888-267-5366 www.zafu.net