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Lions Roar : July 2009
SHAMBHALA SUN jULy 2009 96 “I’ve killed myself so many times, I don’t even exist anymore.” “Now,” Ramis com- ments, “Phil is ready for change.” And, typical of a Ramis film, change means Phil becomes the good guy, the bodhisattva who performs selfless acts of kindness, not manipulatively, but for their own sake. This, naturally, wins him the love of the whole town, and, naturally, of Rita. And not surprisingly, he comes to love himself. “No matter what happens tomorrow, or for the rest of my life,” Phil tells Rita, “I’m happy now because I love you.” Sure, it’s a hollywood ending. But Ra- mis would have it no other way. In his commentary on the fifteenth anniversary DVD, he confessed: “I’m such a sap. I ac- tually believe in this stuff. The movie is quite sincere.” Ramis said that, for him, the key to Groundhog Day is learning to have the in- sight, courage, and energy to make changes when you come to those moments when “you are about to make that same-old, same- old mistake again. We face those changes ev- ery day, large and small, every single day. If you change one little thing, one little behav- ior, then everything might change.” lITTlE DID I KNoW that my mission to unmask the real harold Ramis would take me, months after we met on Martha’s Vineyard, straight to Sodom, or at least to a set built to represent Sodom near Shreveport, louisiana, for three days of interviews as he worked on his new film, Year One. Ramis describes it as “a biblical epic comedy.” The movie is another one in which goodness wins. And in which, through the hebrew old Testament story, Ramis gets to offer his comedic take, yet again, on theological and moral questions, on fate versus destiny, and on who is running the show—“all embedded in Year One,” he said, “because those enduring questions are all embedded in me.” Before I left home for Shreveport, I received a surprise from Ramis—a lami- harold Ramis continued from page 41 SHAMBHALASUN.COM Log on daily, and join the conversation! Visit ShambhalaSun.com throughout June and July, and you’ll find web-exclusive features offering you more on the stories, authors, and themes in this issue of the Shambhala Sun Q&A Frank Ostaseski, founder of Zen Hospice, answers your questions on caregiving Authors’ Blogs • John Tarrant: Escape Arts in Delusionville: Stories of practice and other epiphanies • Karen Maezen Miller: The Laundry Line: Everyday Dharma • Rod Meade Sperry: From the Worst Horse’s Mouth Other Resources • Yoga and Buddhism • Caregiving and Practicing with Illness • The Four Foundations of Mindfulness • The Best of the Shambhala Sun: Commentary—read the articles excerpted in this issue in their complete form. Shambhala Sun Audio Barry Boyce on the meaning of The Mindful Society, with latest examples he’s uncovered And for the latest dharma and cultural news, video, and other surprises from around the Buddhist-inspired world, join the conversation on our blog, Shambhala SunSpace. HAMBHALA udio This issue ONLINE Mountains and Rivers Order of Zen Buddhism Zen Center of New York City John Daido Loori, Abbot Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Vice-Abbot and Resident Teacher Lay-training center in the Boerum Hill section of Brooklyn Residential Training Zen Teacher and Monastic Staff in Residence Daily Meditation Saturday Retreats Sunday Dharma Talk 500 State Street Brooklyn New York 11217 718.875.8229 firstname.lastname@example.org www.mro.org/firelotus