The Lion who thought he was a goat
There is a powerful story from the Upanishads about a lion cub who forgets his true identity. You see, when he was just a baby, his mother was taken by a hunter and he was left all alone. Seeing the poor lion cub and having pity on him, a group of goats took him in and raised him as one of their own. As he didn’t know any better, the lion cub believed that he was a goat, but in time, as he grew, he felt something stirring in him. He tried to push this feeling away and continue to live as a goat, but it was not his true nature and the feeling of unease grew within him as time went on.
Then one day a huge lion appeared, roaring on a hilltop with all his might. All the goats ran, but the young lion didn’t move, he was afraid, but at the same time he was curious. He felt a strange sense of “knowing” and wanted to understand what this feeling was. The old lion approached him and asked him what he was doing with the goats, to which he replied “I am a goat”. The lion laughed and roared: “you are not a goat, you are a lion!”. He took the young cub to a nearby pond and waited at the water’s edge until the waves on the pond were absolutely still and all was silent. He told the cub to look into the mirror-like reflection of the crystal clear water. First the young lion saw the old lion’s face, then his own – after looking again and again he suddenly saw it for the first time and he roared, “Yes! I am a lion!”
The Master is the mirror who can help us to see our true nature. I am so grateful to have had many teachers in this life and one great Master, Tulshi Sen, who continues to inspire me to see the limitless potential of my true self. As the waters of the my turbulent mind become more clear and still with practice, humility and love… the limits of what I believe possible and who I feel I am continue to expand. Ask yourself, am I am Lion?