using the arrow buttons.
by clicking on the page.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider when zoomed-in.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field, and select "This Issue" or "All Issues"
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
displays sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays a slider of thumbnails. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse the full archive.
about your subscription?
Lions Roar : March 2015
I T’S LIKE THIS: You are going along fine, thinking “So far so good,” and then you hit a rough patch and find you can’t keep doing what you’ve been doing. You have to take a fresh look. Disturbing questions about your life arise without asking your permission. Though you are annoyed, you are also curious. Then you run into a friend (perhaps the friend is you in a reflective moment) and after you repeat your complaints a few times, she says something like, “All that stuff you are having a hard time with? Your mind might be doing it, you know. The difference between happy and sad might be inside your mind.” And, even though your head has been filled with conversations, justifications, reasons why your ex-husband really is the differ- ence between happy and sad, or possibly it’s your boss, your kid, or climate change—you begin to wonder. At such a moment, you might say to yourself, “In theory, yes, I have something to do with my difficulties, of course. But in this case, that guy at work really is the problem.” To con- sider that you might have a part in your own difficulty is like a loss of innocence. Loss of innocence comes with some advantages though, the main one being self-knowledge. If you no longer believe that the problem is entirely outside, you can be curious. If you are curious about your thoughts, then your thoughts become hypotheses, which you can test. You don’t have to believe your thoughts or the conclusions and fears that go with them. This is thrilling but also deeply disturbing, because you thought you were your thoughts, and now you begin to suspect that you are not. In which case, who are you? Who is thinking? Hidden in Plain Sight The truth is hidden in the last place we look—the moment that’s happening to us right now. That’s what the Buddha discovered, says Zen teacher JOHN TARRANT. It’s why we meditate. The storehouse of treasures opens by itself. You can take them and use them any way you wish. –ZEN KOAN Being curious—about who you are and your part in your life—is a first step. But into what? Probably into a meditation practice. THE FIRST TIME I heard about meditation as a possible solu- tion to mental anguish, I could barely conceal my derision. I’d been trained in Western philosophy and science, and the East- ern stuff seemed just made up. Looking inwards also seemed like letting down the team, letting the pain in the world get away with being painful. I was from Tasmania, Australia, an island on the far side of the world with penguins and secondhand Carnaby Street fashion and God Save the Queen. I suspected, correctly, that I was clueless. But penguins and silly fashions and general cluelessness are not barri- ers to spiritual discovery; they are more like requirements. At least the cluelessness is important; penguins may be optional. The definition of cluelessness is having awkward questions, and a spiritual practice is one of the few things you can do with those questions. It’s not like answering an exam. Nobody has a decent off-the-shelf answer for why we are here, what death is for, and how come there’s no cure for love? Everybody secretly wonders, but we already know in our hearts that there’s some- thing wrong with the way we are asking. We know we have to live our way through such questions. A practice steadies us while we do this. A PRACTICE MEANS BEING OPEN to what is really going on. It changes our experience of the world, along with our idea of ourselves. The historical Buddha was as clueless as you can get. He grew up in a palace with resources equivalent at the time to those of a Silicon Valley billionaire now. This Indian prince was utterly igno- rant about life (something to consider if you aspire to be a Silicon Valley billionaire). In Buddha’s case his ignorance was a deliberate SHAMBHALA SUN MARCH 2015 62