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A Day With Ram Dass

“My guru told me ‘Be like Gandhi,’” Ram Dass told me once during an interview.  “Gandhi said, ‘My life is my message.’” The words came haltingly, short phrases followed by long pauses.  The former Dr. Richard Alpert, the once eloquent spiritual seeker and psychedelic rebel, sat in a wheelchair, hunting for words, often coming up […]

A Shared World

“Therefore, Ananda, Be Islands unto yourselves, refuges unto yourselves. . . .” As he lay dying, the Buddha gave this advice to his beloved cousin and disciple Ananda. I thought of it as I stood in a security line in the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi, just after a male security guard gestured […]

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India, Part I

As I write this, I am sitting in a pool of lamp light, watching snow fall, watching the pines and cars and the road outside fill up with white, contrasting the snowbound hush, the cocooned feel of the house, like a ship at night, with the sights and sounds and the sometimes spicy and delicate, sometimes […]