Saturday, August 2, 2014

A Fable...

There, inconspicuously, stands an unknown wizard of life. People walk by not so much to avoid his casual presence but are simply caught up in their minds with their normal preoccupations and pressing desires at the moment. In that frame of mind, he’s invisible to them. He nods an unrequited greeting and waits.
 He stands unobtrusively and catches your eye with his nod. Are you like most who rush by without pausing to ponder even momentarily his faint smile?
Hmmm, something about the guy. All right, no harm to return his greeting. He tells you that, in addition to your current ambitious dreams, what you may be looking for is hidden in the vast forest nearby. Instead of feeling offended, his words coax your curiosity. He mentions that deep, deep in the nearby woods is a treasure that awaits your claim. The contents of that treasure unfolds all the knowledge and ready to use tools for the rest of your existence. With them, you will never know unhappiness again.
You squint, take a breath, and ponder if this guy is for real. Yet there is something about his direct words. At that moment he smiles and you know that, uncannily, he knows what you are thinking. The Wizard cautions, “This is not a weekend excursion, a holiday respite”. He pauses, holding your eyes in his gaze, and quietly continues.
“You must commit to finding your claim. At times the task will seem boring and lonely, even fruitless, perhaps insurmountable. Along the way, you will be tempted to rationalize a return to the safety and comforts of your current lifestyle.
“I can only position you in the general direction. The map is Nature herself. Study her as you walk. You can only find out more by entering these unfamiliar woods and discovering her clues laden along the way that point you toward your destiny. You will have to return more than once.You must remain alert and careful at times to avoid injury from rocky terrain and faulty ground. You must protect your health from changing weather conditions. If you show no fear then even the wild animals will respect your passing presence. In fact, they will briefly lead you to trails to shorten your journey. Gradually, unsuspectedly, your continual embracing of the ups and downs of the journey will arouse in your awareness an inner sense of direction and confidence to follow it. Nature whispers in her own way.
“Yet there is an irony to your journey. Once you start you quit at your peril.  Should you decide to withdraw there is a terrible penalty: you will lose your sense of life’s direction and wander lost in the world at large and the ghosts of your insecurities will return to haunt your hours. Animals will shun you as not one of their own. You may even become successful and prestigious as the world views it. But your soul will be lonely with the specter of what could have been.”

How dauntless are you, Grasshopper?

Keep in mind that a Fable should be taken with a grain of salt: Salt improves the flavor.

The Wanderer