Monday, July 25, 2005


You're Thinking Too Much!

"Yond Cassius has a lean and hungry look,
He thinks too much; such men are dangerous." Julius Caesar
Yesterday, my mother and I had our usual banter about spiritual beliefs. She had just come from church where she’d asked for prayers. She was still complaining about pain when she walked.

"The problem is you think too much, mum."
"What do you mean?"
"You’re like the centipede in that fable. Do you know the story?"
"Well, there was this centipede happily dancing away without a care in the world until someone asked him how he moved his legs. The centipede was so busy thinking about how he moved his legs, he never danced again. You are like that centipede."
Mother laughed. "I am not like the centipede."
"Yes, you are. Instead of walking you think about the steps and movements and you get stuck. Don't think about walking, just do it."

Mum was pensive for a moment. "You know, what you are saying is true. There are times when I get out of bed and walk without any pain because I don't think about it. Other times it takes me ages to move my legs."
"Yup, I told you, you are like that centipede. Don't think, just be."
"How can I not think? It's human nature to think."
"There is a difference between having an intention and letting it happen, and letting your thoughts get in the way."
"Sounds like what Jesus said about taking no thought about what we should eat or drink."

Mother went into one quoting the scriptures.

"Yeah, yeah, take no thought. If, as you say, you can sometimes walk without feeling any pain then you do know how to be without thinking."

I reminded her of the miracle in the bible of the man who had been disabled for 38 years as follows:

"2": Now there is at Jerusalem by the sheep market a pool, which is called in the Hebrew tongue Bethesda, having five porches.

"3": In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water.

"4": For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.

"5": And a certain man was there, which had an infirmity thirty and eight years.

"6": When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, he saith unto him, Wilt thou be made whole?

"7": The impotent man answered him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.

"8": Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.

"9": And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked: and on the same day was the sabbath. (John 5: 2-9)
"Imagine if after Jesus had commanded the man to pick up his bed and walk the man had sat there thinking about it, do you think he would have been healed?" I said. "The man didn't think, he just got up and walked."
"But Jesus helped him because he had special powers to heal the man."
"I don't believe that for a minute. You have the same power within you, the power of no thought. Jesus simply inspired the man and he believed. But if the man had sat there thinking about it, he would be like that poor centipede stuck for another 38 years."

Mum said earlier after the minister at her church had finished praying for her, he told her to get up and move around.

"See, he didn't want you to sit there thinking about it or you wouldn't have got up."

Early this morning, mum was busy marinating some chicken. Being the incorrigible daughter that I am, I figured it was the perfect opportunity to remind her of the power of no thoughts.

"Tell me, mum," I said, "while you are preparing this chicken, are you thinking?"
"Of course not."
"You are just preparing the chicken without thinking, right?"
"Yes, so what?"
"While you are chopping onions, are you thinking?"
"No. What's there to think about"
"Aha! See, you do know how to act without thinking! If you can cook without thinking you can also walk without thinking."
"I see what you mean," she said.

When I was going out this morning, I noticed mother was looking sad.
"What's wrong, why are you looking so down in the mouth?"
"Does there have to be a reason?" she said. "Aren't I allowed to look sad if I want to?"
"Of course you are," I said stroking her cheek. "It's funny how you can look sad without thinking about it though."
Mother burst out laughing.

I told you, I am incorrigible.

By the way, I am not trying to impose my views on my mother. I appreciate her religious beliefs. As far as I see it, it's just our usual banter. Naturally, if something inspiring comes out of our banter, I am just going to have to include it in this blog, aren't I? (wink) Thanks mum.

We all have the power within us, the space of no thoughts, where one can simply be.

In Silence,

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