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The Sufis enjoy telling stories about an enigmatic character named Nasrudin. In one of my favorites, Nasrudin decides to start a flower garden. He prepares the soil carefully, plants the seeds. But when his flowers come up, they’re overrun by dandelions. After trying every method he can think of to get rid of them, he finally walks to the capital to speak to the royal gardener. The wise old man suggests a variety of remedies to get rid of the dandelions, but Nasrudin has tried them all. They sit together in silence for some time. Finally, the royal gardener looks at Nasrudin and says, “Well, I suggest you learn to love them.”

Friend of The Sun

The Sun was rebuked last year by the National Endowment for the Arts. In turning down our application for a grant, the NEA panel said the writing in The Sun was “too confessional, too therapeutic.” The Readers Write section, it said, seemed especially out of place; writing like that “isn’t really literature.”

Friend of The Sun

When The Sun turned twenty-five in January, I recalled something the great spiritual teacher Kris…

Friend Of The Sun

A man wrote recently to ask if I was thinking of retiring. After twenty-six years as editor of this…

Friend Of The Sun

When a friend returned from a meditation retreat shortly after the September 11 terrorist attacks, she told me something her teacher had said: “Every time you inhale, imagine it’s the first breath you’ve ever taken. Every time you exhale, imagine it’s the last breath you’ll ever take.”

A Friend of The Sun

I wish it were easier for me to speak my heart to people I don’t know. As a writer, I strive to be honest and self-revealing. But put me in front of a microphone, ask me about my passion for the magazine I started thirty years ago, and I’m like some bashful suitor struggling to put his love into words. That’s why, when our local public radio station asked to interview me recently, I almost said no.