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Lions Roar : Nov 2007
SHAMBHALA SUN NOVEMBER 2007 99 could rewrite it, but even then you might not send the second letter either, and if you wait long enough the natural intelli- gence will come in. The knee-jerk reaction is not based on intelligence. It’s based on obscured intelligence. The results of this reaction are all too obvious. As you’re acting, you could ask, “Have I ever responded in this way before?” If the answer is, “Yes, I always respond this way. This movie is a rerun,” then you’re acting unconsciously. You aren’t even acknowl- edging that you’re doing it again and get- ting the same result. It’s so strange, really, when you think about it. I don’t think we needed the Buddha to come along and point this out to us, but somehow 2,500 years later, here we are. It’s crazy. Nowadays, we have instant access to news and sounds and images of all the wars and violence happening all over the world. We can see all around us vivid pub- lic demonstrations of how biting the hook and getting swept away does not yield good results. It is not adding up to hap- piness or peace. If you need an example of how the usual approach to settling the score doesn’t work, just look around. Unfortunately, when we see all this suffering, we want fast results. Once again we might act on impulse and out of emotional reactivity, but if we look at the many examples of people trying to heal and settle the score in the intel- ligent way, we see that it takes time. The results are slow in coming, but from the larger perspective of natural intelligence and openness and warmth, the process is as important as the result. You are creating the future of the planet by how you work with injustice. You may not see it before your eyes immediately, but you are repaying a debt. Settling the score in the Buddhist sense is letting the buck stop here, because the pain you are feeling allows you to pay back some karmic debt. For what? You don’t know and it doesn’t really matter. All you need to know is that the future is wide open and you are about to create it by what you do. You are either going to create more debt or get out of debt. You could start to pay off the cosmic credit card. ♦ Zen and the Art of Happiness “A charming book. . . . Shows readers, with humor and zest, how to live in the now and change our futures. For most collections.” —Library Journal “Enthusiastically recommended and ‘user friendly’ reading for anyone seeking to enhance their spirituality, deal with life’s stresses, and improve their physical, emotional, and spiritual well- being.” —Midwest Book Review “ Draws on Eastern and Western philosophy, modern science, and personal experience. . . . He speaks as one who has survived the muck and mire and retained his childlike wonder and enthusiasm.” —New Age Retailer “This wonderful little book shows that we can overcome the obstacles to happiness.” —ReverseSpins.com Power Press www.power-press.com Available at neighborhood and online bookstores. ISBN-13: 978-0-943015-53-8 • 160 pp, trade paperback, $10.95 by Chris Prentiss NOV 78-103.indd 99 NOV 78-103.indd 99 8/29/07 2:24:15 PM 8/29/07 2:24:15 PM