This too shall pass

This saying used to annoy me but over time I have come to realise how powerful it is in its simplicity.

Last year I did a 21 day abundance challenge with Deepak Chopra and in it he shared a parable about this concept.

It went like this…

This too shall pass parable

There was a king and he once said to his court sages – I have a ring with one of the finest diamonds in the world and I want to hide a message under the stone which can be useful in times of despair. I will give this ring to my heirs and I want it to serve them faithfully. Come up with a message to be inscribed under the diamond. It must be short to fit on the ring.

The sages knew how to write treatises but could not express themselves in one short sentence. They tried hard but couldn’t come up with anything.

The king complained about the failure of his venture to a faithful old servant who raised him from infancy and was part of the family. And the old man said to him:

”I’m not a sage, I’m not educated, but I know of such a message. During my many years spent in the palace I met a lot of people. Once, I served a visiting mystic whom your father invited and he passed me this message. Just don’t read it, put it under the stone inside the ring and read it only when there’s no way out at all.”

The king listened to the old servant.

After some time, the enemies attacked the country and the king lost the war. He fled on his horse and enemies pursued him. He was alone, they were many. He drove to the end of the road. There was a big cliff before him, if he fell there – that would be the end. He could not go back, as the enemies were approaching. He already heard the clatter of their horses’ hooves. He had no way out. He was in complete despair.

Then he remembered the ring. He opened it and under the stone found an inscription of three words: “This too shall pass.”

After reading the message he felt that everything went quiet. Apparently, the pursuers got lost and proceeded in the wrong direction. Horses were no longer heard.

The king was filled with gratitude to the servant and the unknown mystic. Words were powerful. He closed the ring and hit the road. Again, he gathered his army and conquered back his state.

On the day when he returned to the palace, they arranged a lavish welcoming for him – a feast for the whole country. People loved their king. The king was happy and proud.

The old servant came up to him and softly said: “Even this moment will pass. Look at the message again.”

“Now I am the winner. People are celebrating my return, I’m not in despair.”

“Listen to the old servant,” he answered, “it works not only in bad times but also in good.”

The king opened the ring and read: “This too shall pass.”

Again, he felt silence falling over him. Although he was in the midst of a noisy dancing crowd. Feelings of pride and entitlement disappeared. He understood the message. He was a wise man.

And then the old servant said: “Do you remember everything that happened to you? Nothing is permanent. No feeling stays. As night changes day, moments of joy and despair replace one another. Accept them as the nature of things, as part of life.”

We are living in a situation right now that feels like it is never ending; like there’s no way out. The uncertainty, financial insecurity, fear, monotony, separation from those we love, whatever we are feeling, is taking its toll on many people, myself included.

My response to it has been to up my anti in regards to my spiritual practices. I’m praying in the morning and at night; I’m doing daily spiritual reading (even if it’s just a page or a paragraph); I’m making sure I engage with my recovery programme daily; I’m meditation in the morning and before bed; I’m drinking lots of water to keep my mind alert; I’m writing in my journal morning and night and doing daily affirmations and mantras; I’m going on daily walks (rain or shine) to connect with nature and breath in fresh air; I’m taking part in spiritual workshops or challenges and programmes to help me stay connected to my higher self. At the weekend I did a workshop on the gift of presence and I’m six days into a manifesting challenge with Gabby Bernstein.

I am noticing a lot of anger out there. Separation and polarisation have become our biggest enemies in these social media driven times.

We can all get through this next lockdown but we must try and find a place for compassion, love and tolerance. Everyone’s circumstances are different. Everyone is coping in their own way. We need to do what we can to get through it, whatever that may be for us, without attacking or harming others.

This too shall pass.