What are you carrying?

I wonder what is on your mind right now?

Does it concern what is happening today?  What
are you thinking about and worrying about, most of
the time?

I caught myself today thinking, let’s say, rather
creatively….and it reminded me of a story.

I heard this story many, many years ago.
It has stayed with me.
I have thought of it many times and told it many

Far, far way there were two priests who went on a
long walk that lasted many days.  They were
walking through a forest when they came upon a
wide river.  On the banks of the river, there
stood a young woman.  She told them that she
needed to cross the river but that she was
frightened that she would be swept away by the
current.  She asked for their help.

The older of the two priests immediately lifted
the woman up into his arms and crossed with her to
the other side.

The younger priest followed.   He was astounded
by what had just happened.  He thought to himself,
‘we’re not allowed think about women, talk about
women and certainly not touch women and yet my
older brother lifted her and carried her across
the river’.  He couldn’t believe it, he didn’t
understand it.  But he did not say a word.

The two priests kept on walking in silence.  The
younger priest could not stop thinking about what
had just happened.

Finally, after many hours had passed, the younger
priest turned to the older man and said, “Please,
tell me, how is it that you did what you did?  We
are not allowed touch women and yet without any
hesitation you carried her across the river.”
The older priest replied, “Yes, I picked her up,
I carried her across the river and I put her
down…You, my son, are still carrying her”.

What are you carrying that perhaps you should
have put down?

Why not share your story below!

Best wishes and best stories

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8 comments on “What are you carrying?

  1. What an fabulous fable. Thanks for sharing.

    What am I carrying?

    There’s a long list but I suppose the biggest is that my mother came from a working class family with little spare cash but never poverty line. She had a good size house , cars and income when she was married to my father. But I always seem to go back to not wanting to make more money than her.

    That is frustrating for me and denies my potential clients the benefit of the services I can provide but I still carry that load.

    Thanks again.

  2. What timing, Lisa. I just finished talking with my partner and she finished by commenting that I seemed stressed. I agreed. I had a lot on my mind, a lot of information rattling round in my head from the day: emails, phone calls, project proposals, and a 101 other things. I could feel myself slipping down into that “I can’t handle all this stuff” place and further into the dark hole of “I’m not good nor capable enough to handle all of this”. Definitely ‘old story’ going on here. So one last check of my email before shutting down the computer and there’s your email asking, “I wonder what is on your mind right now?” Well, your story helped…time to put down the burdens of the day, let them go and rest. I’m off for a hot bath and some quiet reflection. Tomorrow’s another day, another story.

  3. Lisa,
    Thanks for this story. Although, I had heard it many times I couldn’t stop reading it until I got all the way to the end. The reminder to stop and look at thoughts we may be carrying that sap our energy – was great for me.

    Also, I purchased a copy of your new book ‘Cinderella and the Coach’. It is wonderful. I am enjoying it a lot. Thanks for another quality product.

  4. Hi Lisa,
    Thanks for fanning the coals on this gem of a story. What come to me first and perhaps predictably are old hurts, slights, unfinished business, assumptions… things that I am aware of, or at least intermittently aware of. More troublesome though is the though that I am carrying things that I am completely unaware of. This is where having a friend, a mentor, a coach really is a gift. Just the other day, my wife Liz who is all three to me helped me see that I was ‘carrying’ an unmet need that I was unaware of and that colored my emotions around communication with an old friend.
    Shenru Suzuki talked about ‘no trace’ which in essence is completely digesting an experience so that you don’t carry it over into the next experience, which then allows you to see and be in ‘beginners mind,’ i.e. not carrying…

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