Monday, December 29, 2008

WHAT A FOOL BELIEVES

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I came across a good anecdote from a follower of G.I. Gurdjieff. Please read. It's a good'un:

I had just arrived at the L.A. airport and was waiting for my friend to pick me up when I noticed my cell phone was missing. The next thing I noticed were the swirl of emotions - loss, worry, fear, sadness, and worry that often arise when I lose something.

My friend would not be picking me up for half an hour, so I sat down in the baggage claim area and began observing and inquiring. Once I was aware of all the feelings I asked my favorite question: "What would I have to believe to feel this way?" I've seen that feelings are always generated by some belief.

It took me awhile to identify the belief: "I shouldn't be a fool." The loss of the cell phone had triggered that belief. "Clearly," my mind said, "you were a fool to lose the phone and you shouldn't be a fool." The negative feelings automatically followed.

Then I questioned that belief and looked for the real truth. When I told myself I shouldn't be a fool I became defensive, fearful, self justifying, trying to look good, trying to hold it together, worrying about what my wife would say.

"So what's really true? I am a fool. I lose things all the time. I SHOULD be a fool! After all, I certainly am sometimes, there's no escaping that. And realizing that I am a fool is certainly more liberating than denying I'm a fool. "

All of this flashed through my mind in a few seconds. And the feeling of gloom lifted, being replaced by a sense of joy and freedom. Everything in the airport brightened. There was a little two year old boy throwing a plastic water bottle to the ground, shrieking in glee and kicking it around the airport. "Well there's someone who doesn't mind looking like a fool!" I thought.

The little boy and I were just the same at that moment - full of joy and life, fools with no care of what anyone thought of us. I laughed and laughed and laughed.


—Robert Middleton

1 comment:

Mystery said...

That's great! I'm a fool too. XX