Tucked into a deep, high remote canyon somewhere in the Himalayan Mountains sits a secret monastery assigned the task of training would-be adepts in the lost science of self-realization. Only those who have studied there or who are allowed to live there even know it exists.
Early one morning, after a particularly difficult meditation period following weeks of futile attempts to quiet his mind, one of the young aspirants rushes over and throws himself at the feet of the senior monk, crying, pleading, “Master, please help! I feel as if I have come to a complete dead end in my work to be free. No matter what I do, there’s no escape.”
The master pulled the young monk up from off of the ground, looked quietly into his tear-filled eyes, and then began speaking in a stern but gentle voice. “First, young one, wake up; drop these useless dramatics. Only then can we hope to learn something together.”
Using the sleeve on the arm of his robe to wipe his face, the aspirant did the best he could to sober himself, and said, “Yes, of course, Master: as you wish.”
“Now then,” said the Master. “What is it that you want to ask of me?”
The aspirant gathered himself together and said in a quiet voice, “Master, what’s wrong with me? I can’t shake off these negative states! Why do they keep coming back to me no matter what I do to get rid of them?”
The Master paused and answered, “Because you don’t want them.”