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Lions Roar : July 2008
SHAMBHALA SUN JULY 2008 38 long. I ended by saying, “When I greeted you so wholeheartedly that evening, I was feeling wonderful because it was such a relief to stop hiding from myself. When I asked myself, ‘How can he have said that about me?’ I realized that you said it be- cause it was true.” “No it wasn’t,” he said. “Not the way I said it.” He said his embarrassment about having written so impulsively had made him reluctant to contact me. “You were right, though, about what you said about me,” I replied. “I had made the wrong decision you said I made. I was covering it up for myself, so I wouldn’t see it. So I wouldn’t need to acknowledge it or deal with it. Your letter gave me the chance to avoid dealing with it. I could just be mad at your harsh words, and at you—and not look at my own issues.” So there we were, good friends with normally good communication skills who each felt wounded by an event and too uncomfortable to confront it for a long time. Was it just the insult? The in- sult wasn’t that awful, even if it were true. Was it the startle of having someone I trusted as a friend “attack” me? Is embar- rassment, especially when it is a reminder of other embarrassing moments, so pain- ful? Apparently it is. The pain of wounds can cause the mind to build barriers that protect it from going near the scene of the wounding, lest more hurt happen. I’m not sure how wounds heal, except that time helps. Thinking of the day of my rapprochement with my friend, I might tell it as a karma story, saying, “The neces- sary and sufficient conditions for change to happen—for me to see what was really making me mad—were finally present.” I hope the eightieth birthday party went well. ♦ So there we were, good friends who each felt wounded by an event and were too uncomfortable to confront it for a long time. www.festivalmedia.org AVAILABLE AT RETAILERS EVERYWHERE — WATCH THE TRAILERS ONLINE THE BEST BUDDHIST CINEMA ON DVD JULY 18-39.indd 38 JULY 18-39.indd 38 4/25/08 11:57:08 AM 4/25/08 11:57:08 AM