Saturday, March 18, 2006

Journey called Life... (Part 6 : Letting Go)

Within the zen tradition there is a story to demonstrate the value of letting go :

There was once a young monk who was travelling in search for the meaning of enlightenment. After a long search he still haven't found the answer. Not to be deterred he continued his search.
After w while he came across an old man who was climbing up a hill carrying a large sack on his back. Seeing that he might get an answer he approached the old man and asked him "What is enlightenment?"

The old man just dropped his big sack and said nothing.

The young monk understood what the action meant and became enlightened. The old man just picked up the sack and continued on his journey.

Over the course of our life we had accumulated a lot of things, of which we were not able to let go. Emotions like old grudges, jealousy, and even memories that we weren't able to let go are analogous to the big sack that the old man was carrying, while the old man himself represents you as time passes. The sack will become bigger and heavier as time passes, and that will take us more and more energy to carry them.

But still we carry them along because we are afraid. We have fear of the unknown, we don't know what will happed if we were to let go. We were afraid of opening the sack and have a good look at what is really inside there, compared to what we think were inside there...We were afraid of the naked truth, fearing that it will hurt us more...

Yes, the process of dropping the sack is not as easy as what the old man had done. We will needto face up with reality and tackle it face on... We will need to open up the sack and take a good look at what is it that had been burdening us all along, and learn how to leave them behind.

Letting go is a wonderful process. It is the process of you letting your past be the past and not get yourself stuck there, hindering yourself from moving forward.

Drop the sack, the feel the newfound freedom...Freedom from the ghosts of the past, and freedom to feel the cool breeze blowing up to your face... and for the moment, feel the happiness coming to you...


  1. good story indeed! ;-)

  2. HI..I heard tis story very long time ago when the master in our school gave us a lecture.Letting go...well...

  3. some call it escaptism... i think letting go is the best way to face most situations :)