I was thinking about this statement today. I was also thinking about the tiger analogy that we learned about in the post “Don’t Bother the Tiger.” I saw that I could use the tiger analogy to further explain why what we resist persists. We discuss that today.
The tiger analogy
The basic idea of the tiger analogy is that the false self thoughts that go through our mind are like a tiger in front of us. As we watch the tiger go by it does not pay any attention to us. As soon as we reach out to push the tiger away the tiger realizes that we are there. Now we have a tiger by the tail. That rarely ends pleasantly.
The point is to allow the tiger to just keep walking. It is the same with our false self thoughts. Those are thoughts such as sadness, anger, violence, attachments to possessions or people. When we just let those thoughts go through our mind without grabbing them – they cannot hurt us.
When we grab onto the false self thoughts we are actually resisting them. For example, we notice the thought that we feel sad. When we observe that thought we have two choices. We can either believe that thought or we can just quietly watch it pass though our thinking process.
When we choose to observe and allow the thought to go through our thinking we do not resist it. We observe it and eventually it goes away. We are not sad. We are in the moment and observing.
When we choose to believe the thought that we are sad, we have now engaged the thought. We believe that we are sad, but we do not want to be sad. That subtle action becomes the seed of resistance.
That seed of resistance grows a little bit every time we try to do something about being sad. We decide to watch a funny movie to cheer us up. All that does is create more resistance. We are saying that we are so sad that the only thing that will cheer us up is a movie. This causes us to expand our belief that we are sad. We are resisting our sadness and thereby causing it to persist.
As we mentioned earlier, the solution is to not engage the thought that we are sad. As long as we stay observant we are able to watch the thought go by. Therefore the answer is to stay as the observer, not the participant.
It always gets back to being in the moment – staying in the now. When we are observing our thoughts we are in the moment. When we resist them we are the participant and we are not in the moment.
I hope this has helped everyone to understand a bit more about resisting and persisting. Tomorrow I hope to talk about external situations and our reaction to them – and how that reaction can also cause resistance and persistence.
Until tomorrow –
Es kava turen hai
We work towards an identical goal.
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