This Too Shall Pass

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This Too Shall Pass written in arabic letters

This too shall pass written in arabic letters

Every thought, form, feeling and situation in life is temporary

In chapter VIII of A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle there’s a story about the inevitability of change. That story made me aware of how powerful an influence temporary feelings have on my life. It also gave me a tool against that destructive behaviour. I am hoping it may do the same for you.

According to an old sufi story, there was once a king in the middle east, who was constantly torn between happiness and despair. The slightest thing would provoke a strong reaction in him, and when he felt happiness, it would swiftly turn into disappointment or hopelessness.

The king eventually became so tired of himself, and his life, that he decided to face his problems and call for help. He was notified of a wise man in his kingdom, that was said to be enlightened. The king pleaded for his help, and when the wise man came to see the king, the king told him: “I want to be as you are. I want balance and clarity in my life – And i will pay you any price you demand for that insight”.

The wise man responded: “I might be able to help you, but this insight is so valuable, that the entirety of your kingdom will not be enough to pay for it. That’s why i will give it to you as a gift, if you will honor it”. The king promised he would, and the wise man went on his way.

Weeks later the wise man came to the king again. This time bringing a jade shrine. The shrine contained a golden ring with arab letters inscribed on it. The letters said: “This too shall pass”.
“What is the meaning of this?” the king asked as he stood baffled. The wise man told him to always carry this ring on him, and to always look at it before he judged anything again. Good or bad. “Do this and peace will be with you always” the wise man said.

A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle

"This Too Shall Pass" Reveals the eternity living inside you

What “This Too Shall Pass” really means

It seems that this frame of mind will not only serve as consolation when you feel pain in life – It also sounds like you shouldn’t get too excited about good things, because your joy will ease away soon enough anyway. Let us examine it a bit deeper.

What the sentence really means is, that you should do your best, not to judge the situations you find yourself in. Be they good or bad. The words do not that mean you shouldn’t praise happiness in life, and they are not meant to simply comfort you when you feel pain in life. They have a more profound purpose, which is to make you realise that every situation is temporary. Every situation is temporary, because every form and every feeling in life is temporary.

Becoming aware that change is inevitible

When you are aware, that every form and every feeling is temporary, you can develop an abundance in your life. It will be possible for you not to identify yourself with form and feelings. Not identifying yourself with your situations doesn not mean you will fail to experience all the good things in life. It will actually make you enjoy them more, when you accept that all things are temporary and that change is inevitable. Because realising this will make you praise the good situations in your life, as long as they last, without the fear of losing them. When you are free of the chains linking you to your current situations, you are free to develop a higher perspective of the situations in your life. You are no longer trapped in them.

I couldn’t help to think, that maybe this is what Chuck Palahniuk was talking about, when he made Brad Pitt give Edward Norton a chemical burn in Fight Club – In a slightly more sadistic way of course.

Revealing the eternity living inside you

The words “This too shall pass” is revealing eternity, because they are pointing out that all situations in life are temporary. – And only that which is eternal can point out that which is temporary. “This too shall pass” is a sentence pointing at the eternity living inside us. The eternity that will outlive our physical form, thoughts and feelings. The eternity which is life.

When you cover up the eternity living inside you with temporary situations you are giving them much more meaning than they, in reality, have. Living like this will continually lead you into despair over truly irrelevant things.

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  • antonette

    Went through a horrible break up and this helped me see

  • N.P.Macy

    every feeling is temporary? even love?

    • F

      Yes, even love.

      • mpumi

        thats not true, the scripture lets us know that God Himself is love, and in that case how can God be temporal?

        • golem

          you are temporary. Therefore, God’d love for you is temporary.

          • MsPenn

            “Let there be light.” ~ God of Israel
            “I am the beginning and the end, the alph and the omega” ~ God of Israel
            “I am the light of the world.” ~ Jesus

            —-Love is light. God is light. Therefore Love is eternal. What a sad, hopeless, lovesless life the non-believers chooses. :-(

            Jesus is the resurrected Messiah of the God of the Bible. No doubt about it…He is LOVE!

      • MsPenn

        I feel sorry for you. :-( Why would you want to believe that?!! God is love and He is eternal. That’s what the Bible says. That’s my source of truth..that love is eternal. And that blesses my life with so much freedom and peace. I truly hope you read what Jesus said abut who He is and choose to believe He wasn’t a liar or a lunatic.

        • MsPenn

          Everything in this world is temporary….meaningless….It’s where you go in the next world, when good and evil are eternally separated from each other…that matters. And you can choose eternal love/life or you can choose eternal hate/death. What you are choosing to hate or love is God. Your choice! Make this choice carefully and with wisdom. You have your whole life to decide…but guaranteed…this is the ONLY choice you will make in your life that is NOT temporary!

  • Nicolai

    Great post! The lost ring story from a new earth is also amazing.

  • Miguel Maldonado

    I love it!!

  • China Reynolds

    I love your post, your tattoo, your tweets and you!

  • vanessa

    Thank you.

  • Vicodin M.A.

    That’s right, the only constant in life is change… BUT, we all have something called memory and that’s why there’ll always be things chasing us for the rest of our remaining lifetime…

  • A.Z.D.S.

    The Sufi story is colorful but I wouldn’t put my faith in a story from the meditative branch of the Muslim religion (some orthodox Muslims might even deny that they are of their faith). I prefer the Christian Bible which states that “love never fails” (1 Corinthians 13:8). Now, there’s a constant for you, “faith, hope and love, but the greatest of these is love” (13:13).

    • SisterPenn

      Thank you! I did a web search for the scripture that says “This too shall pass”…thanks Brother! God bless you!

    • PA71

      Love never fails? I think we know better. We know it does. Often giving too much love comes back to bite, with a vengence.

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  • ram p

    For someone to feel happy sometimes it is necessary for someone to feel sad….Think about it

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