I recently read a post by Rich Litvin where he shares an old Zen story about 2 monks who came to a river on their travels.
As the monks were preparing to cross the river, they saw a very young and beautiful woman also attempting to get across.
The young woman asked if they could help her cross to the other side.
The two monks glanced at one another because they had taken vows to never touch a woman.
Then, without a word, the older monk picked up the woman, carried her across the river, placed her gently on the other side, and carried on his journey.
The younger monk couldn’t believe what had just happened.
He rejoined his companion, but he was speechless, and an hour passed without a word between them.
Two more hours passed, then three, finally the younger monk could contain himself no longer, and blurted out:
“As monks, we are not permitted to speak to or touch a woman, how could you carry her across the river?”
The older monk looked at him and replied:
“Brother, I set her down hours ago, why are YOU still carrying her?”
- Something from childhood? An unresolved argument with a loved one carried over from the weekend?
- A job loss? A promotion that didn’t happen?
- What’s the feeling that, if you chose today to offload, would take 10 pounds of emotional weight off of you? (regret, resentment, guilt, shame?
- What’s the thought that you can immediately change that has led to those heavy emotions? (“I should have……” “It’s my fault”, “I don’t have what it takes”).
What would lighten your load if you chose today, to let the past just be, knowing you and only you, create your NOW and tomorrow? That only you have the control over what you choose to think?
Write it down. Tear it up.
Done and Done
Your today awaits
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