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Lions Roar : January 2014
The Shambhala Sun Marketplace is designed to enhance the response rates for smaller and first-time advertisers who are directly selling products and services. To advertise in the Marketplace call toll-free: 1-877-422-8404, ext 31. Ad rates start as low as $270 per insertion had in my life. I was so disappointed when the police interrupted it to arrest me!” I thank Peggy for the interview. With the rain now pelting down on the white tarp above, it’s getting difficult to hear her and a crowd is gathering. It is three o’clock, time to let freedom ring. A stone’s throw away, Thay and clutch of people with umbrellas are under a tree inviting the big bell—breathing in, breathing out. We form a messy, accom- modating circle under the dining tent that expands into two layers to let every- one in. Line by line, a man reads one of Thay’s poems and the rest of us repeat it. We are a powerful human microphone that can be heard even over the thunder: I walk on thorns, but firmly, as among flowers. I keep my head high. Rhymes bloom among the sounds of bombs and mortars. The tears I shed yesterday have become rain. I feel calm hearing its sound on the thatched roof. Childhood, my birthland, is calling me, and the rains melt my despair. Rain, tears, tea. The clouds above look interminable, but Thay teaches that they can and do transform. He says, “If you don’t practice, you do not know how to handle your suffering and you continue to cry a lot.” Yet with mindfulness, tears become rain. New growth follows. Holding hands, we sing “Amazing Grace.” We sing “We Shall Overcome.” We sing “Wade in the Water.” And for a moment, I have to put my hand over my chest. Like Peggy said, I can feel a strong emotion manifesting in my body. An achy pain, it’s half grief over the seemingly endless sorrow of this world. But it’s also half joy because here under this tent there is so much love that I think maybe—just maybe—we really will overcome. ♦ ANDREA MILLER is from Nova Scotia, where it seems like it is always raining. She is the deputy editor of the Shambhala Sun and the editor of Right Here with You: Bringing Mindful Awareness into Our Relationships. www.thaischool.org 1-877-246-2348 Thailand’s Only Free Buddhist Boarding School for Girls Expansion Project Underway Join us as we provide quality education, hope, and a safe home for at-risk girls in Thailand for at-risk girls in Thailand HOPE for At-Risk Girls 83 SHAMBHALA SUN JANUARY 2014