The Path of Inner Peace

Kaykavoos nods to Davyn as they sit on the temple floor, for their second discussion of the week.

“On the path to enlightenment, we all face moments that challenge us. Often when we talk about such things, we focus on the significant life-changing moments which are grand. Perhaps you choose to risk your life to save a child by giving her the last of your food. Perhaps you choose to stand up to a bully who has wronged your family. These are not the things I speak of today. Instead I speak the way you think of yourself.

Let me speak of myself for context. In my youth, I was offered the opportunity to use a pottery wheel with a master for an afternoon along with a small class. I had not done it before, but it seemed like an enjoyable opportunity. Seeking to impress the master potter, I spent all day, missing dinner even to complete my work. After it was fired and glazed, I realized it was not as beautiful as many of the bowls I had seen from other students, but I was still proud of the work I had done.

As the master appraised it, he made a simple comment about how it was middling at best of the efforts he had received. I was crestfallen, I had invested myself into that work and thought that I had made a valiant effort for one who had not been trained. Yet the master’s words indicated that I lacked potential in this area. Today I look to the skills that Dame Kirsa, Lady Shamara, and Lady Alexandria have to craft in their own ways and am in awe of their work. I do not seek to find a craft of my own though, for you see, I have no potential at such endeavors.

This is of course a lie that I tell myself. A lie that some part of me believes because of the trauma I felt on that day. A reasonable person would say that the master only said that my effort was middling, not that I lacked potential. A reasonable person would say that I was middling at best because I had never received training or applied myself significantly to that task before. A reasonable person would say that even if I did particularly poorly, that as the Principle goes, ‘Nothing is impossible with sufficient will.” Yet I still hear this voice inside of me whenever I attempt the most basic elements of certain topics. I am not comfortable with the skill I possess, and am seemingly afraid of repeating the experience of judgement for being poor at the form.

Each of us has such a voice inside of us. It may not speak to you about being poor at crafting, but instead focus on a matters of mathematics and the market. Perhaps it causes you to distrust your leadership of others or even your judgement about life in general. Each of these thoughts is entirely common and undoubted is something that you have observed in others before. These thoughts reflect your self-doubt. and draw you away from your highest self. To banish these voices is not a simple ritual you might perform with a priest to remove your fear, but a persistent trial we face each day.

These voices are of our own construction, crafted to protect us from the world we have endured. They are not maelific to be vanquished in a moment with a blessed weapon or resolution, for to destroy them is to destroy who you are. Rather we note when we hear them, to recognize the fears that we still must work through, and rather than listen to them, we move past them and in so doing, we remake the image we have of ourselves.

I may never choose to be a potter, and I acknowledge in this moment that I am not skilled at such, but that is a path that is not closed off to me.

Think upon this, what paths have you closed off to yourself? What do the voices tell you?”

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