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Lions Roar : May 2008
Beyond Carrot IF YOU VISUALIZE YOURSELF as a donkey on the road to en- lightenment, you may begin to find that there are lots of carrots and lots of sticks on the path. The numerous enticements include the promise, or at least the hope, that meditation will make you a better person. You hope you will gain control of your thought process, a modicum of contentment, and the ability to positively influence your life and your environment. You won’t be so nega- tive and defeatist. Pure motivation and a lot of meditation and contemplation will, you hope, make you a happier person. The further promise of mahayana is that you will become one of the Dharmic Heroes. You will help other people, you will re- lieve the tremendous suffering of beings, you will save the world, and you will do this all without complaining—with joyful loving kindness, in fact. In the vajrayana, you may finally find someone who understands you from the inside out—your guru—and you discover magic. Through your devotion, your wisdom, and your commitment to practice, you may experience bliss and empti- ness, all within the sacred world. Buddhadharma Without Credentials C AROLYN GIMIAN We’ve surveyed the Buddhist path to its fruition; now let’s return to where we really are—the beginning. The question we all face is, what will make our journey genuine and not another spiritual fantasy or creation of ego? What Buddhism calls the Four Reminders will keep our practice real. ©ISTOCKPHOTO.COM/ANTHONYBROWN MAY 74-79.indd 74 MAY 74-79.indd 74 3/6/08 11:34:47 AM 3/6/08 11:34:47 AM