“No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path.”
You are Not Your Thoughts
I would like to start this article off with a parable. I think it does a good job of showing how you are not your thoughts. It begins with a beggar who has been sitting on a box for 30 years begging for money. At this point a stranger walks by.
“Spare some change?” the beggar asks.
“I have nothing to give you.” replies the stranger. He then looks at the box. “Whats that your sitting on?” asks the stranger.
“Just an old box. I have been sitting on it for as long as I can remember.” replies the beggar.
“Ever looked inside?” asks the stranger.
“No. Whats the point? There’s nothing in there.” replied the beggar.
“Have a look inside.” insists the stranger.
The beggar manages to pry open the lid and in disbelief he realized the box was filled with pure gold.
This exchange is taken from Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now. I think this book does a great job in separating the egoic mind (as Tolle calls it) and ones true self. In the parable the beggar represents you. You see, most people are begging for materialistic things, hoping that it will get them confidence or happiness but it never does. The problem is these people are trying to satisfy the ego and the ego is never satisfied. Once it gets what it wants it only wants more. Once you get a new car it won’t be long until you decide you want a faster one. Once you get your new phone I bet you will want the next new phone that’s coming out (Even if its exactly the same phone!). So what do you do? Well, you do exactly what the beggar did, you look inside the box – you look inside yourself.
How To Find Your Confidence
You will never be truly happy if you continue to follow the ego. It is only when you begin to ignore the ego and realize the wealth within you that you become truly separated from desire. Although I do recommend meditation, I’m not going to tell you to run off to some mountain and meditate with a bunch of monks. Now I know it sounds like i’m speaking in rhymes and i’m starting to sound like that turtle from Kung Fu Panda – telling you to look ‘within’ yourself and not listen to your ‘ego’. But don’t worry I will get to what those things mean right now!
What Is The ‘Ego’?
The ego is coined by Eckhart Tolle and it is basically that voice in your head – it’s your inner voice that kind of narrates your life. My main point is that voice is not you. You are not your thoughts. You are the person who chooses to follow those thoughts. Now for the ‘look within yourself’ bit. This ones a little harder to explain because this is something I haven’t even done and 98% of people on this planet hasn’t done either. This is called enlightenment. Enlightenment is what the Buddha calls and Tolle calls The end of suffering. This is when you open that box and realize its full of gold. This is when you are completely present and within the moment and don’t care about past or future and nothing effects you. You are truly happy. This is how you get self confidence at its core and this is what I dub Impenetrable Confidence. If you conquer the self within, no harm can come to you without. And by the way, who is the stranger in the parable? Well that’s me(although Tolle claims its him but what does he know). I am here to point that box out to you and only you can open it. I hope you make the same decision to pry that box open and reveal the hero that’s inside of you(see what I did there?). I can’t do it for you. You have to do it yourself. I will give you tips and strategies on how to do it but its up to you to change and let go of your ego. I know you can do it!
Have a great day!
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