‘To observe the mind is to become free of the madness of self.’

Happiness in a modern society is more elusive than ever, says Tony D’Souza. He takes a lesson from Zen Buddhism

‘The thoughts running through your head are really your conditioned mind, which is the result of all your stored memories and upbringing.’ | Photo: fikry anshor / Unsplash.

The air on the high Tibetan Plateau is very thin. There are hardly any trees, and those there are are small, stunted and windblown. Hundreds of square miles of empty grassland lay flat and open underneath a vast blue sky. That is why the villagers could see the horse coming from so far away. At first it appeared as a tiny quivering black smudge surrounded by a cloud of dust against the horizon. As it came nearer, they could make out the sound of horse’s hoofs pounding on the turf and could see the shape of a rider crouched on to its back, both arms clinging around the horse’s neck.

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