Sunday, 25 May 2008


The Snake’s Lesson
A snake living in the forest in India was fed up with his life. “I see a person, I bite a person, and people hate me and scream and run away when they see me coming.” He said to himself. “There must be a better way of being in the world.”

At that moment, a wise Indian spiritual teacher was passing. The snake approached him. “Please help me,” implored the snake. “I want to change. People are afraid of me and I don’t want to hurt people any more.”

The old man took pity on the snake and agreed to be his teacher. He taught him not to bite and to centre in love, sending out loving thoughts and blessings to the people in the nearby village. The snake was a willing student and after a few months the teacher thought he was ready and left to continue his travels.

A year later, the Guru was again travelling in the forest where the snake lived and thought he would look in on his friend. He found the snake in a terrible state, all battered and bruised. “What happened to you?” he asked him. “Teacher, it was awful.” The snake replied through tears. Over the months the little boys realised that I wasn’t attacking, they became more and more brave, coming closer and closer, eventually they would run up and give me a kick and now I am constantly being beaten.”

“Poor little snake” the master said with great compassion, “I didn’t tell you not to hiss.”

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