The Buddha considers with all seriousness

the variety of decisions that revolve around desire:
Nutella chocolate chip with sea salt, pistachio lemon
creme, or cinnamon amaretto swirl? Where is human nature
so weak as in the ice cream section of a 24-hour grocery store?
And really, this is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg,
only one layer of this rainbow-shingled world shiny with neon
and digital contraptions, sprinkled with add-ons. He is tempted
to pack up his new digs in the city and tell his young family
that they’re moving to the country, to an island in Micronesia,
somewhere they can hang laundry to dry on the line, collect rain
water in barrels, plant their own tomatoes, squash, and bitter
melons, send the kids to school and watch them walk down
the dirt path in flip-flops without worrying about
their safety— But he’s promised his wife he’ll try
to find a way to live in the jangly heart of the metro,
practice what he’s always talking about in coffee shops:
simplification and letting go, right where it is. And right
where it is
is right here, right now: in many ways, it is
the biggest challenge to The Noble Eightfold Path, which all
the teachings describe as “the most straightforward approach”
to human life and suffering, except that the latter are anything
but straightforward. As for instance, even in this small
frozen section of the universe, where desire after desire
jostles for his attention and his wallet— blackberry cobbler,
peaches and cream, orange creamsicle, black walnut crunch—
he knows the impossibility of satisfaction, the reverie
that purchase promises but cannot in the end provide.

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