The Poison Tree: How to Transform Anger in 4 Steps (September 2014)


Using the traditional metaphor of the poison tree, JUDY LIEF teaches us four Buddhist techniques to work with our anger. According to Buddhist psychology, anger is one of the six root kleshas, the conflicting emotions that cause our suffering. Its companions are greed, ignorance, passion, envy, and pride.  Anger can be white hot or freezing cold. Anger can be [...]

About a Poem Willis Barnstone on Baudelaire’s “Our White House”


Our White House Outside the city I have not forgot Our white house, small but in a peaceful lot, Her chipped Pomona and her old Venus In a skimpy grove hiding their bare bust, And twilight sun both dazzling and superb Behind the pane where its immense eye burned Wide open, and the intense curious sky Pondered our long silent meals and the eye Of sun mirrored in [...]

Obstacles on the Path (September 2014)


If there’s a rock in your path, you have to move it, go around it, or climb over it. The same is true in meditation, says SAKYONG MIPHAM. You can’t just pretend obstacles aren’t there. You have to relate to them.  In meditation, we are on a journey from here to whatever we are trying to accomplish, be it mindfulness, peace, or compassion. We are developing the ability to [...]

RAIN Cools the Flames of Anger


EMILY HORN teaches us how to recognize, accept, investigate, and not identify with our anger.  The best way to transform anger and other strong emotions is to befriend them. As with any relationship, it takes time to become intimate with the inner workings of our minds. To do it we need courage and strength. And we need the help of an effective technique. Peeling away the [...]

All the Rage (Editorial; September 2014)


If a kid is cute enough, their anger is also cute. I used to know a little girl like that. About eighteen months old, she had curly hair and dimpled arms. She never seemed to cry or scream, and she liked to be picked up and cooed over by adults, even strangers. Yet I remember being at a dinner party once when she saw her mother hold someone else’s baby, and in a flash her brow [...]

Books in Brief (September 2014)


TIBETAN PEACH PIEA True Account of an Imaginative LifeBy Tom RobbinsEcco 2014; 384 pp., $27.99 (cloth) As the celebrated author of the novels Skinny Legs and All and Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, Tom Robbins is known for his extravagant, humorous metaphors and for juxtaposing the absurd and the lyrical, the sacred and the profane. But these are not just tricks he saves for [...]

Nothing Special (September 2014)

No one wants to be just another person in a world of seven billion people. GERI LARKIN on what happened when she embraced being ordinary. I shop for groceries early, typically before 8:30 in the morning. At that time of the day, it’s easy to do a week’s shopping in less than half an hour since I pretty much have the entire store to myself. At the checkout, the same cashier [...]

The Biggest Party Ever


As a child, HOWARD AXELROD dreamed of a festival that everyone in the world attended. Now he realize that it's been happening all along. Through third and fourth grade, I had a recurring fantasy, though I thought of it as a project. Night after night, surrounded by my retinue of stuffed animals, I’d lie awake elaborating and refining. No dreams of tree houses for me, no plans [...]

The Buddhas of West 17th (July 2014)


The art, spirituality, and ideas of the Himalayas meet the best of the modern world at New York's Rubin Museum. Celebrating its tenth anniversary, we showcase art from the collection and dialogues featuring LAURIE ANDERSON, MARTIN SCORSESE, SHARON SALZBERG, the late PHILIP SEYMOUR HOFFMAN, and many more. Located in the fashionable Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan, the [...]

About a Poem: Sarah Messer on Nick Flynn’s “Hive” (July 2014)

Hive What would you do inside me?You would be utterly lost, labyrinthine comb, each corridor identical, afunhouse, there, a bridge, worker knit to worker, a spanyou can’t cross. On the other side the queen, a fortune of honey. Once we filled an entire house with it,built the comb between floorboard & joist, slowly at first, the constant buzz kept the [...]