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Opinion Pieces - Category Archive

Aug 19
Sunday

The Liberation of Lowered Expectations

Filed under Opinion Pieces

by Larry Barnett

One reason I sometimes feel dissatisfied with life is that my expectations are too high. In fact, this is the primary reason. I expect, for example, that candidates for President of the United States will have been taught good manners like politeness and not interrupting or calling others names, things like that. And I expect that voters will be informed, thoughtful and use reason in their consideration of who’s best to serve in office. Like I said, my expectations are set too high.

Disappointment comes easily to all of us, and not just due to politics. Disappointment is always just around the corner; my hamburger disappoints me, and the fries are too soggy. My router keeps losing its connection to the Internet. The newspaper delivery was late. My wife has lost her keys, again. My kids don’t call to say “hello.” Like Gilda Radner as Rosanne Rosannadana on Saturday Night Live used to complain, “it’s always something.”  Continue…

Entries filed under Opinion Pieces


Shambhala Shrine Amidst Crisis

Shambhala Shrine Amidst Crisis – HIGHLIGHT

Working with issues and concerns related to Shambhala Center shrines and images of Shambhala teachers by Barbara Heffernan The Shambhala community is struggling to determine the appropriate response to recent accounts of sexual misconduct on the part of our spiritual leader and lineage holder, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. On a ... continue
Posted August 11, 2018 by CGH
Fixated on the Future

Fixated on the Future – HIGHLIGHT

Our fascination with linear time, and the possibility of being present in the moment by Larry Barnett There’s something about the present that’s just not good enough, the nagging sense that what’s happening now needs to be better, is in some way insufficient and unsatisfying. Out there, tomorrow, ... continue
Posted July 26, 2018 by CGH
Going Your Own Way

Going Your Own Way – HIGHLIGHT

Gender respect in death and dying by Anne-Marie Keppel Last year my teenage daughter did a report on women in history who disguised themselves as another gender. I loved the topic and followed the studies along with her and found myself really cheering the trans individuals on. I ... continue
Posted July 24, 2018 by CGH
Give It A Good Cry

Give It A Good Cry – HIGHLIGHT

Respecting our sadness by giving way to tears by Susie Cook I am a meditation practitioner, a mother, a wife, a friend, a daughter, a daughter-in-law, a teacher, a director, a gardener, a cook, a hiker, an artist, a walker, a smiler, a crier, and, yes, a crier. ... continue
Posted July 16, 2018 by
In the Days to Come

In the Days to Come – HIGHLIGHT

One person considers the future of her relationship with Shambhala  by Carol Henderson Ever since reading the June 25th letter from Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, I have been swept by waves of emotion. Feelings are both deep and close to the surface; the sight of a flower or the ... continue
Posted July 8, 2018 by CGH
Disfavoring Moral Complexity

Disfavoring Moral Complexity – HIGHLIGHT

by Larry Barnett One of the dilemmas of modern times is effectively coming to grips with morality. The word itself is derived from Latin, meaning “proper behavior,” but has become loaded with other connotations, both religious and social. Our humanitarian, modern sensibilities incline us to disfavor moral ... continue
Posted July 6, 2018 by CGH
Friendliness and Forgiveness 

Friendliness and Forgiveness  – HIGHLIGHT

Thoughts on loving-kindness and our ability to forgive  by Elaine Yuen This is what should be done by those who are skilled in seeking the good, having attained the way of peace: They should be able, straightforward, and upright, easy to speak to, gentle, and not proud, Content and easily ... continue
Posted July 4, 2018 by CGH
Regret, Comparison, Courage

Regret, Comparison, Courage – HIGHLIGHT

Reflections on some feelings and mental habits that we all experience in our everyday lives. by Susan Firer A while back some topics came to mind: regret, comparison, and courage. I’m going to make an assumption that all of us are probably intimately familiar with the first two, ... continue
Posted June 28, 2018 by CGH
Eavesdropping on the Elderly

Eavesdropping on the Elderly – HIGHLIGHT

Lessons learned by listening to our elders by Anne-Marie Keppel Not all elderly are cascading fountains of wisdom.  But simply because they are old and they see and do things differently than those of other ages, little life-altering gems often bubble up. New on the job as an Outings ... continue
Posted May 31, 2018 by CGH
Holding the Middle Ground

Holding the Middle Ground – HIGHLIGHT

Our paradoxical experience of space, time, and being in the human realm by Larry Barnett The human experience is a paradox; our minds are infinite, as vast as the universe itself, while our bodies are finite, grains of sand tossed by the tides and winds of time. We ... continue
Posted May 27, 2018 by CGH
Conversations in Khaki

Conversations in Khaki – HIGHLIGHT

A member of the Dorje Kasung contemplates the meaning of the khaki uniform by Alan Auguston The Q&A table was set up, my presentation queued, and my debut representing the Kasung Squad was underway. It would be my first time in the beret, and I had spent days ... continue
Posted April 27, 2018 by
The Waiting Game, Part Two

The Waiting Game, Part Two – HIGHLIGHT

Learning to see an eye-drop treatment regimen as an opportunity to practice by William Larsen  As I relaxed my protest, I found I could drop much more quickly into a calm inner space, surrendering into the sofa, allowing the wetness of the eye drops to wash through me. Splash, ... continue
Posted March 15, 2018 by CGH
The Waiting Game, Part One

The Waiting Game, Part One – HIGHLIGHT

Making the most out of the time of your life, by surrendering to opportunities for practice by William Larsen  There are some who say “practice makes perfect.” That may be, but after forty years on the meditation cushion, all I can say is that I’m still a long way ... continue
Posted March 13, 2018 by CGH
Remembering Milarepa Day

Remembering Milarepa Day – HIGHLIGHT

Reflections on the preciousness of group practice and the inspiration of Milarepa’s songs of enlightenment by Carol Henderson In the early days of my connection with Shambhala Buddhism, I happened to drop by the local center in Seattle on what turned out to be Milarepa Day, the first ... continue
Posted February 25, 2018 by CGH
Death in Advance, Part Two

Death in Advance, Part Two – HIGHLIGHT

How our viewpoint on life can change through the practice of contemplating death by Anne-Marie Keppel I was overjoyed when I recently read in Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche’s new book, The Lost Art of Good Conversation, instructions for how to contemplate our last breath on our deathbed. He asks, “What do you need ... continue
Posted February 7, 2018 by CGH

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