Searching where there's no Light

September 6, 2016

To make mistakes is a normal fact of life - but to repeat the same mistakes over and over again brings us in trouble. One such repeated mistake is to look for solutions at the same wrong place. When grown-ups tell themselves 'try harder' or 'I just have to keep smiling and it will be fine' then this sounds like a recipe for disconnected desperation. Instead we have to look in places we haven't looked before. The following story is hence one of my favorites...

The Sufi master Mullah Nasruddin was on his hands and knees searching for something under a streetlamp. A man saw him and asked, "What are you looking for?" "My house key," Nasruddin replied. The man joined him in looking for the key, and after a period of fruitless searching, the man asked, "Are you sure you lost it around here?" Nasruddin replied, "Oh, I didn't lose it around here. I lost it over there, by my house." "Then why," the man asked, "are you looking for it over here?" "Because," Nasruddin said, "The light is so much better over here."

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