Lew Richmond

‘I spent many years slowly incorporating, testing out, asking, “Does my practice really reach that area?” Some of the first things I noticed when I went into the corporate world and got a job were, (a) how angry people were a lot of the time and (b) how often they expressed it, and (c) how much that was kind of alright! Very different than here. I’m not saying it was OK. Some of this anger was quite destructive. But you would go into a meeting, and people would pound on the table, they’d yell, they’d express themselves, and I started to do it too. And I thought, well, I’m feeling much more like myself, all my fifteen years of Zen training hasn’t totally eliminated my capacity to get angry, and it felt kind of like a relief. I didn’t feel like I wanted to show anything of my Buddhist years in that situation, but it’s interesting that somehow, over time, people saw it. They would come into my office and close the door and they would say, “I’d like to talk to you about something; I can’t really talk to anybody else.” I didn’t want to be a priest, but people seemed to want me to be a kind of priest, in that situation. I began to realize that that was another way in which what I had done here couldn’t be easily rubbed off-that it changes you, it changes you in some fundamental way. And other people can see it.’ (from Wind Bell)

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