Lama Rinzen in the Hungry Ghost Realm
In Hidden Buddha Lama Rinzen finds herself reborn as a doctor into the Hungry Ghost Realm in a haunted hospital on Colorado’s eastern plains.
It’s an unfriendly place. The patients do not respect her, the staff ignores her, and there’s rumors of ghosts.
Rinzen is afraid of ghosts. She does not see them. Instead she focuses on trying to learn the Hungry Ghost Realm’s lesson so she might progress along her path to enlightenment.
But nine-year-old patient Claudia sees them. She says the ghosts are there to trap Rinzen in the hospital so she might never escape. Not in this lifetime, and not in any future lifetimes either.
How can the lama learn the lesson if she cannot see the things she denies?
Maybe that’s what the Buddha means when he talks about emptiness. These little bits of ourselves we keep suppressed and hidden and never admit to?