Illustration by *Smudgeproof
There’s a reason why the sound of a river or a creek calms your soul. Even the sight of it calms you. It is because the river has come to teach us all one of the most powerful lessons on earth: No one’s words or thoughts can derail us from our goals.
No demon above nor below can stop you from attaining the heights you seek.
I’ve used the river metaphor before; in fact, some have called me ‘river man’ because of it. No, my name continues to be Bamboo Forest.
The river is a great teacher.
Round up every high school bully, every negative person who sincerely wants the worst for others and have them congregate around the river. Then, have them look downward into its clear moving water. As they look down they can see their faces looking back up at them. They begin chanting at the river with every fiber of their mind and spirit:
“You’re not good enough.” “You’ll never amount to anything; have you proven yourself before?” “You’re wasting your time, you’ll never make it.” “You’re an idiot for thinking you can.”
What other negative things might they be saying?
Yet, even while all of this profound negativity is being channeled toward the river, it continues to flow.
The river moves no matter what the atmosphere. If it’s raining, lightning or grey – it moves. The river channels all of its mind, body and spirit into the direction of its dreams.
When the river goes through a break up with its beloved – it doesn’t stop moving. It flows. It’s relentless. It’s wise.
Since the river is always flowing and moving – do you think it’s never in a bad mood? Wrong again – of course it gets in bad moods. It just moves in spite of them. It moves. It moves. It moves. The river also doesn’t take pleasure and often feels pain when others project their negative viewpoint on it. When this occurs, however, the trademark sound of babbling, rushing water continues, unimpeded.
It’s hard to believe, but the river worries sometimes too, just like you and me. Except you would never know by looking at it, as it never allows itself to become stagnant; it’s a rushing river my friend! It opts to run on the wisdom of its inner being and not be handicapped by some toxic emotion that would have it flow differently.
Also – the river blames no one. It takes full responsibility for its shortcomings in the past. It realized long ago that meditating on what it believes made it fail to live up to its potential has only led to its turning into musty canal water where slimy, green algae grows.
“All blame is a waste of time. No matter how much fault you find with another, and regardless of how much you blame him, it will not change you . . . ~ Dr. Wayne Dyer.” [emphasis mine]
One thing you can be certain of about the river is that it never dwells on the past. Ever. Do you hear the sound of the water rushing over the rocks? Tell me… when you hear the babbling water, when are you hearing it; in the past or the future? Neither. It’s only possible to hear this precious sound in the now.
Since the river channels all of its mind, body and spirit into the present, it has no room to dwell on the past. The river understands by letting go of the past entirely, allows for its potential in the present to reach its absolute zenith. If the river was to dwell on the past, it would lack the energy to flow and create its beautiful music.
It should be mentioned that I was sitting by the river a few weeks ago and sparked a chat with it. I said, “Tell me, River, how do you do it?”
“No matter what obstacle comes my way, be it mental, be it physical, I’m going to direct my flow in the direction I want it to go.”
We all can take away great wisdom from the river. It personifies the truth that moving while challenged is at the core of what wisdom really is.
Photo by jeffk