By Flo Mauri
“All suffering is the result of the mind clinging to its unfortunate thoughts.” – Buddha
In Mary Sullivan’s brilliant essay, “Are You a Carrot, an Egg or a Bean?” she depicts a distraught daughter explaining to her mother about how “hard” life is. It’s so hard, the daughter contemplates the option of “ending it all.”
The mother escorts her daughter to the kitchen and immediately fills three pots with water and puts them on the stove.
In the first pot she places carrots.
In the second she places eggs.
And in the third pot, she places coffee beans.
Without saying a word she lets them boil. Twenty minutes later, she turns off the burners. She takes out the carrots and places them in a bowl. Next, she takes the eggs out and places them in a bowl. Then, she ladles out the coffee and places it in a bowl.
The daughter then asks, “Mother, what’s your point?”
Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity – boiling water. However, each responded differently. The carrots went in strong and unrelenting; but after being subjected to the boiling water, they lost their strength. The eggs were “soft-hearted;” but after sitting through the boiling water, they became hard. Their conditions had changed them.
However, the coffee beans were unique. After being placed in boiling water, the coffee beans changed the water.
The beans actually changed the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain or adversity. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you.
When the hour is the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate yourself to another level? How do you handle adversity? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?
When life leads you to your “boiling point” be as a coffee bean. Show your true nature and step into your own power to change the world around you. Change your conditions and unleash the greatness within you – expect success, express gratitude and take responsibility.