There are areas of thick vegetation in the desert – like an oasis. Monkeys abound and of course there must be water, but that water is very difficult to find. The monkeys stay away from the water whenever any humans are around as though they, the monkeys, understand that water is a scarce commodity. The Kalahari tribe want the monkey for two reasons – to eat, and to show them the location of the water.
First the tribesman finds an ant hill positioned so that it can be clearly seen from the edge of the oasis. Then using a spear, a hole is drilled into the ant hill (if it was drilled into the sand the sides would collapse). The next step is to expand the bottom of the hole by rotating the spear so that there is more room at the bottom than the shaft going down. Now a very elaborate performance takes place. A glass crystal catches the light easily and its shine is directed towards the vegetation of the oasis. The monkeys of course are watching and you know that the curious monkey loves shiny objects. The crystal is dropped into the hole and the Kalahari tribe spread out, keeping their distance from the ant hill.
You can guess what the monkeys do! Yes, that's right, they come forward and one plunges its arm down the hole and grabs the crystal. Its hand is now a fist big enough for the fist to fit into the bulb at the bottom of the shaft, but too big for the shaft. The Kalahari tribe comes forward – the other monkeys scamper, but the one with the crystal, it just won't let go of the crystal. That's all it has to do to save its life – let go.
The rest of the story is not important but I'll tell you anyway. The monkey is tied to a post in the sun and near it is placed a block of salt. In a few hours the monkey is literally "dying of thirst", having licked the salt. With the Kalahari tribe in position, the monkey is released. Of course it throws caution to the wind as it makes a direct path to the water, with the tribe following .... and that's how they find the water in the desert oasis.
The story of the monkey leads us to question how many old habits we have that we need to let go. Most of these old habits were probably very useful to us at some time in the past. But the time when they were of most use has gone. The moral of the story about the monkey is not that monkeys shouldn't eat peanuts, or play with crystals, or be curious. It's that there are circumstances where monkeys must let go. So too with many of our old habits, our old ways of doing things, our old opinions, our old attitudes. All of these things may have served us very well in their time. But there comes a time to let go.
Acceptance and letting go at one stage of my life was extremely challenging – especially?when I was dealing with my three daughters who were no longer on this physical earth. I was ultimately able to think logically about all the circumstances surrounding the girls' death including the fact that they were physically dead. In other words accept what had happened?as a fact – to stop denying it – and look for the lessons in adversity. In this way I was co-operating with the situation and more likely to learn from it. Eventually I came to terms with the situation and then I could work on letting go my daughters.
Letting Go does not mean forgetting – you can never forget, however you can dull the pain.Letting Go does not mean 'not thinking about the people involved', it does not mean 'not having photos of your loved ones around' it does not mean 'not talking about them'. Letting Go can be done after acceptance so that any tragedy or adversity suffered is not in the forefront of your mind so that you can move on in my life. When I now think of my daughters I smile about the good times and remember them as beautiful young women – 16 years old and twins at 19 – they haven't aged……unlike their father.
There are many circumstances whereby it is best to "let go" – examples are the death of?someone close to you, a relationship, children as they move on in life, one's status in life, any resentment or jealousy, a pet, or perhaps life itself. (This is covered in more detail in my book Switch On To Your Inner Strength.)
Meditation – Acceptance and Letting Go
Below are the words of a meditation which I have prepared and will be available as a CD in a couple of weeks. In this meditation we'll call your circumstance "Your Challenge". Your challenge may well involve grieving and if it does, know that "letting go" is a process that will help. Doing this meditation will definitely be beneficial. Accepting and co-operating with any situation is part of Letting Go. Doing this meditation has a cumulative action, so keep doing it again and again until you know you have "Let go" and you're moving on.
The Words Of The Meditation
Choose now the challenge you wish to "Let Go" and bring to mind all the aspects of your challenge. See the scene or sense that you see it. Hear what may have been said … who is involved … what specifically involves you … what specifically involves others. Experience this challenge by visualising all its components whilst the music is softly playing.
Music for 1 to 2 minutes.
You imagine this challenge as a sack of sand that you have to carry around with you … you have to take it everywhere with you. Beside your bed at night, on the car seat when you're driving, on your back when you're walking. It's a huge weight to carry all the time and you feel more tired … the sand somehow feels heavier … and more unwieldy … you feel worse … you must get rid of this burden as it is effecting every bit of your life. You start the process of "letting go" the sand – letting go your challenge by acknowledging different components of your challenge.
Your challenge already exists. You realise that whatever has happened can not be changed.You realise that it's time to stop denying the challenge. Time to begin to accept it. Time, in fact, to co-operate with your challenge. You start by asking yourself the question "What is there in this adversity, this challenge that I can learn and apply to my life?" Listen for an answer.
Thirty Second Pause …
You become aware that by asking that question, your level of acceptance and co-operation has allowed you to move on to Letting Go, so that you can move forward in life.Do you have a belief … or an expectation of yourself or of others within your challenge. Acknowledge to yourself that you have done the best you can do in this situation. Acknowledge to yourself that any others involved have done the best that they can do in this situation. No matter what you've done up until now, know that you've probably done the best that you knew how to do at the time. One way forward is to make all that OK by saying to yourself "I've done the best that I can do – now that I know more, I'll do better next time." You accept all the good thoughts and say "yes" to them. You reject any negative thoughts by saying "No" to them. You acknowledge yourself for who you are and know that you are growing. You can love and accept yourself for the way you are. You say to yourself … " I love and accept myself.".
You re-affirm your decision to move on with your life … you know it's time for you to continue your progress.
Now picture and imagine that you take your challenge, your sack of sand, to your favourite beach and you pour your sand onto the beach, making a sand castle. You prepare yourself now to say farewell to your challenge … your sack of sand … your sand castle. The tide is coming in. A wave comes in and gently washes around the base of your sand castle … your challenge. Some of the sand is swept away. A series of waves comes in and removes the base of the sand castle. You can see the challenge starting to crumble. You resolve to remember all the good times to do with your challenge. The remainder gradually disappears as you let go. The waves continue and more sand disappears … there is very little left now.A big wave comes and the last vestige of the sand … your challenge … disappears. Your challenge is gone … you have let go and only remember the good parts of your challenge, knowing that you can bring those good parts to mind and smile, feeling happy and content.
You are calm and smiling and generating love and affection, knowing that you are doing the best that you can do and that anyone else involved is doing the best that they can do. You accept the situation for what it is, knowing that you have "let go" and that you can move forward in your life. Yes, well done ! Congratulations ! And now … you count from 1 to 5 and on the count of 5 you will open your eyes, feeling relaxed, well, healthy and invigorated, knowing that you have Let Go and can move on. No. 1 – you feel the blood flowing to the end of your fingers and toes. No. 2 – you move your fingers and toes. No. 3 – you stretch a little bit. No. 4 – you gently move your head, and No. 5 – relaxed, well, healthy and invigorated, having "Let Go" so that you can now move on.
So, identify any negative habits and change them and….. with any deep challenge in your life know that the process of Acceptance and Letting Go is a first major step to?moving on in your life.
Be easy on yourself and All The Best
A Letter From A Participants About Letting Go
It is very hard to put into words exactly what your seminar has done for me. It has certainly been very profound and is still happening. The thing that really fascinates me is that the effect is not only on me, which I understand, but on people I deal with who have not attended your seminar, know nothing about it, and to whom I have certainly not said anything.
I must include some background to explain:
My husband, Don, and I met when we were both serving in the R.A.F. during WWII. I was 17, and he was 21. It was love at first sight. At first we thought that marriage was out of the question. We came from different countries, background, socio economic groups, religions, i.e. everything was against us. However after a few months we decided that life without each other was not worth living, and that we would overcome all the obstacles. We were married 13 months after we met. Don was English and when his overseas tour was over I was sent to England with him.
Since we got engaged we started investigating different religions and philosophies. Though neither of us was religious in the accepted sense we felt a strong need for a common 'belief'. The more we talked and read, the more we discovered that fundamentally all religions believe in the same thing: Love thy neighbour and do unto others as you would have them do unto you. It was not until Don was at Uni (1946/7) that we entered into discussion with a friend of his and were introduced to the concept of a continuing Spirit, a life after 'death', E.S.P. etc. It all made immediate sense and followed rational thinking. All natural laws stipulate that nothing disappears. It may change but does not vanish. From that time on we became involved with meditation.
Don died some years ago now and my world fell apart. We had 49 years together, working, living, and all leisure time. It was an ideal marriage (that was my ration of heaven on earth!). During his last 2 years here, he was completely dependent on me, I was 'on call' 24 hours a day and was perfectly happy to be so. I really loved him unconditionally. When he died, even though I realised that for him it was the best, I fell apart and went into a deep clinical depression, and was quite unable to cope. I realised that I needed help and asked for it. I got it from counselling, friends and family, After about 3? years I started to cope, I had lost my bitterness, but then I developed a guilt complex. It was as though I was being disloyal to him by being able to cope. It was this guilt which I was able to get rid of at your seminar.
Since then I have had a complete change of outlook on life. I have fully accepted that he is happier now and that I have a right to go on with my life as best I can. I have been much calmer and more settled. Yes, I still miss him and know that I always will, just as I shall never stop loving him. I have found my outlook to be much more positive. I have gained a measure of self worth which I have not had before. Be it imagination or a different perception of what people say to me, I am constantly being told things which reinforce and boost this worth. Recently I had occasion to go to a conference, and for the first time ever I made the first approach to people I did not know. For the first time I offered an opinion from the floor of a symposium. All this may not seem like much to some people, but after the last 4 years of being in hell (I have always believed that we experience our heaven and hell in this life), for me this is a giant step in the right direction. I guess you can help others because you have been there yourself. Thank you.
Name and address supplied
Sandy's Note: This wonderful participant has asked us to keep her name confidential. I'd like to add that at the seminar this lady announced that all she wanted to do was die - to be with her husband. Initially, she had her husband in her Peaceful Place. It was marvellous that during the meditations she 'let her husband go - let go and let God'. Of course a few tears were shed, and very soon after her father appeared in her Peaceful Place - this indicated to me that she truly had let go, and was now allowing others into her life. I'd really like to thank her for sharing such a personal and inspiring experience.