A caterpillar walks into a therapist’s office.
“I’m depressed,” he says to the therapist. “Because you know what the problem of my life is? No wings. I have no fucking wings, man! Can you fix that? How can I get me some butterfly wings?”
If the caterpillar were your friend, as the wise person you are, you’d probably try to talk some sense into it. You’d probably say, “Sweetheart, you don’t become a butterfly by sticking a couple wings onto yourself. That’s not how it works. But don’t stress about it. Just be patient and wait for a few weeks. Your wings will come. They will grow themselves. For now, just be the best caterpillar you can be and save yourself some useless worries!”
There’s a time and a place for every stage of the soul’s journey. The ambitious kind of caterpillar may think it will become a butterfly faster if it sets some self-improvement goal and studies it. But the truth is it ain’t gonna happen until it’s time.
Every stage of your growth journal is there for a reason. It’s designed to be honored, respected, and savored at every step. It’s absurd to pass value judgment on caterpillar v.s. butterfly. Because without the former, the latter would never exist.
Yet too often that’s what we do to ourselves. People on a spiritual path think of themselves as incomplete work in progress unless they attain the spiritual trophies they want.
Often times people say they devote themselves to the path of enlightenment because they’re tired of the rat race that goes on in the external world. Yet they manage their inner growth in the exact same way that they were taught to manage their career or finances. The ego thinks this is a whoever-gets-the-bigger-prize-faster-wins game.
In Episode 54 of The School of Intuition soundcast, I talk about “spiritual ambitions”, and why being honest with your experience at the present moment is way more powerful than checking items off your spiritual accomplishment list.
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