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Fraser Trevor Fraser Trevor Author
Title: As wise as serpents and as harmless as doves,But I never told you not to hiss
Author: Fraser Trevor
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‘As wise as serpents and as harmless as doves.’ I think the same requirement holds true for the spiritual seeker of today who, as he...
Martin Luther King leaning on a lectern. Deuts...
‘As wise as serpents and as harmless as doves.’ I think the same requirement holds true for the spiritual seeker of today who, as he gradually evolves, may well find himself facing not dissimilar problems. For, like it or not, in our role of trying to stand for, or pioneer new ways to be more fully human, we seekers are inevitably an integral part of the process of renewal happening in the world. Hence, we will inevitably confront a lot of resistance, not only from inside ourselves, but also from those who want the world to stay the way it has always been! Unless we are able to generate a strong spiritual light inside ourselves, and maintain it steadily in the face of those opposing forces belonging to the status quo, we may not do especially well in our initiations.

So what does being wise and harmless entail? For me, it entails embodying a new kind of spiritual power as a consequence of embracing contrary traits inside ourselves. For Martin Luther King, it meant being tender hearted and tough minded , as opposed to the way most people are today, which he saw as being soft-minded and hard hearted. For King, the soft minded/hard hearted person was the rigid person devoid of intellectual rigour, always opposed to change, perennially unwilling to question things, and wholly unable to feel genuine love or compassion, and hence devoid of heart qualities which our world has so much need of. For King, what was important was that love and logic would fuse, that the wisdom of the heart might enter the mind, while at the same time, a person’s mental strength could serve to toughen their heart. And I agree. Creating such a synthesis inside ourselves, however, does not just happen overnight!

I once heard a story about a snake who wanted to become more spiritual, and who went to visit a guru for advice, who told him he needed to go out into the world and send love to everyone he met. This the snake did, but he got very battered for his efforts, as everyone threw things at him. He returned to his master rather dejectedly, saying that he had given love but had got wounded for his efforts. ‘Ah’, the Master replies, ‘ But I never told you not to hiss’!
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