New directions take shape within us constantly. We change our diets, our habits, and our patterns, hoping that small steps will make great differences in our lives. However, we sometimes miss that the change we seek may already exist inside us – and that all we need to change is our viewpoint.
An example to illustrate: the frog, living entirely within the pond, cannot conceive of a world outside of the pond. He might imagine life beyond the water, or wonder at the sunlight above the trees. But he cannot understand the enormity of the full world until he goes beyond his familiar reality.
Similarly we revisit the “familiar” in our own lives, wondering when we might finally let go of fear and experience full happiness, tranquility, or whatever else we seek – forgetting that what we search for already lives within us (causing us to seek in the first place!).
Once, a Zen master said to a monk, “You must see the universe in your cup.”
The monk looked into his cup, but didn’t see the universe, so he threw the cup away. The Zen master explained, “We think the cup is too small to hold the universe. Intellectually, we can’t see how it could fit. But wherever we go, the whole universe always appears–in a cup, a window, in a smile, in a word.”
All the parts of our lives we desire to transform – these are the very changes that are already happening within us each waking moment. We do not have to drastically change our lifestyle to attain this transformation – we only have to live with our eyes and minds open to the possibilities in the here and now.