Posted by: Stephen Paul | August 22, 2009

Letting Go of Truths and Beliefs that No Longer Serve You

A man walking along a high road sees a great river, its near bank dangerous and frightening, its far bank safe. He collects sticks and foliage, makes a raft, paddles across the river, and reaches the other shore.

Now suppose that, after he reaches the other shore, he takes the raft and puts it on his head and walks with it on his head wherever he goes. Would he be using the raft in an appropriate way?

No; a reasonable man will realize that the raft has been very useful to him in crossing the river and arriving safely on the other shore, but once he has arrived, it is proper to leave the raft behind and walk on without it. This is using the raft appropriately.
In the same way, all truths should be used to cross over; they should not be held on to once you have arrived. You should let go of even the most profound insight or the most wholesome teaching; all the more so, unwholesome teachings.

The Buddha, from The Essence of Wisdom: Words from the Masters to Illuminate the Spiritual Path by Stephen Mitchell

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