As I was thinking about how erratic our thoughts and emotions are, a metaphor came to mind that I'd like to share.
I love the power, and simplicity of metaphors, especially when it comes to spirituality.
Imagine a vast, empty sea, free of any contaminants or marine life. Then suppose that in this sea, we dumped the most enormous bucket of fish you could think of. Thousands upon thousands of tuna, piranhas, sharks, maybe some eels... any fish you can think of.
Now think of the immediate aftermath of the drop. The water would reflect the most chaotic scene you've ever witnessed.
The fish would be fighting, trying to eat each other, flailing around. For about a minute, it would be utter chaos above and below the surface.
You see, this scene reminds me of our inner storm.
Situations happen around us all the time which cause thoughts and emotions to stir up on a whim. And then, eventually, things die back down and return to calm. Until the next time, when the fish drop all over again.
The point is, we're so accustomed to freaking out when the fish are dropped in, thinking it'll be like that forever. Then when tranquility arrives, we get scared thinking about the next round of fish.
No one is saying the fish don't exist. No one is saying they're not painful and disturbing. We all know that they hurt. But do we have to suffer so much?
The viewpoint I'd like to offer is: there's a vast, expansive space around those fish in which they're being disturbed. That's the part of you that is unchanged. That's the real you.
Get in touch with that. Get to know the true nature of that. Because when the fish are in their most chaotic times, your space is still there, nurturing the good and the bad, without judgement, without discrimination. Just pure acceptance of what is.
The only thing that remains unchanged is the water holding the fish. That's you, and you can learn to lean back into that space, rather than forward into the fish.
As you get disturbed throughout your days - whether it's stress from work, anxiety from world events, or bouts of depression - don't ever forget that you are greater than what you experience.
Live with substance!