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  • Writer's pictureMichael Kennedy

Lessons of a Circus Elephant

“Our prison is constructed from a lifetime of Shoulds, the world of choices we’ve unwittingly agreed to.” ~ Elle Luna

Our mind is a bundle of resolutions, hesitations, choices, wishes and wants, shoulds and should nots, always chasing external things. But it also has the power to turn inward for inner peace and freedom. The mind is an instrument for both bondage and liberation. It can’t be touched or healed by the hands of a surgeon and there’s no warden with a key.

Shackled to a meaningless job? Bitter relationship? Hopeless life? Unable to break free and experience true joy? Read on, there's hope after all!

Here's what we can learn from the Circus elephant.

Young circus elephants are chained to a peg in the ground. They fight tirelessly to break free, but they cannot. Over time these elephants are conditioned to believe that the chain and peg will always win the battle of freedom. They tug, twist and turn, until eventually they figure out they just aren’t strong enough to break loose. They realize trying to escape is futile, so they stop pulling and settle down and stay where they are. As the young elephant gets older, larger and more powerful, it remains convinced the chain and wooden peg will constrict it, when in reality, this same elephant could extract a tree from the earth.

Like the circus elephant we’re often conditioned to think we're bound or limited in some way. We’re told we can’t, we shouldn’t, we’re not creative, educated or charismatic enough. Or maybe we failed in a relationship, business or some form of competition and we developed our own self-limiting beliefs and doubts; our own chain and wooden peg; our own prison.

We have incredible power inside us. We can take on the world. We just have to change our beliefs.

Is there a wood peg holding you back? Be free. It's an illusion. A lie. We are not circus elephants.

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