I randomly started pondering the idea of a rich man getting into heaven vs a camel getting through a needle.
I thought about how it could be a mistranslation, or how it’s typically inferred to mean giving up possessions, but I’ve interpreted it that if you held a needle up and looked through at a camel, there’s the camel. It’s not about shoving a camel through uncomfortably small non-existent tunnels or literal needles. It’s more than material stuff – it’s giving up the stuff that actually shapes your heaven, hell, earth, etc. It is giving up the way you think about things to see something else, see things differently, see a different perspective. I took rich as not necessarily wealthy but rich in ideas or hang ups. So, the idea would be it’s difficult to give up all these things you know/believe/think/speak in favor of a new way of seeing or thinking.
I started thinking about how many camels I’ve been trying to shove in needles and whether different perspectives would help. Realizing that my ego actually knows nothing, are there things I’m rich with that are keeping me doing something clearly ineffective?
I suggested to my husband that anything can be reframed. To myself, I’ve called it looking on the other side of the needle. Where it’s not a problem, it’s a solution we haven’t found. It’s not bad behavior, it’s needing love or expressing a need they don’t have the words for. That we don’t have to do anything but we can often find a reason to want to do something we don’t want to.
I’m just tired of using words as weapons against myself. I have learned how valuable focus is and if I focus on something being a problem, I find more problems. If I focus on there being solutions, I find them too. I quote Boss Baby to the kids constantly “Either you can or you can’t: you prove yourself right every time”
The Buddha taught his Noble Truths. The truth that’s making me smile right now is “there is a way to end suffering”. Sometimes, it becomes so easy to become trapped. That there is no way out, that there is nothing to do, it’s only going to get worse. And, as a person who apparently cobbles a belief system from recovering Catholicism, Buddhism, Alan Watts, and Boss Baby… if I believe there is an end to suffering, there is an end to suffering. If I believe there is no end, there is no end.
So, there are some camels in my life that I need to look at differently. It’s weird to describe but as soon as I connected all these things together, I felt better. I felt like all my problems were solutions waiting to be found, information waiting to be learned, or doors waiting to be opened. What if it is as simple as changing your mindset?
A lot changed when I stopped calling myself sick, and there was a lot I had to learn, solve, and find to stop calling myself sick and mean it. But first I had to entertain the possibility I could not be sick or that I could stop being sick. Then I had to say it and not mean it. Then I had to accept I was sick. Then I had to actually accept it and not just say I was accepting it. Etc.
I think empirically speaking, looking at the other side of the needle, listening to the Boss Baby, Buddha, and Jesus has helped me find answers. I’ve found the longest part of the journey are the miles shifting a belief. Where I’m not becomes I am. Once that happens, “you prove yourself right every time. ”