Don’t Touch the Cobra
This was the advice I received from the Buddhist nun, Ajarn Sundara, who visited our school. It was in response to my question about how to deal with a recurring thought.
‘Thoughts are like cobras in the mind. If you don’t touch them, they won’t hurt you.’ As odd as this might sound, it actually did make me feel better. Now when the thought comes, I don’t ignore it, but tell it kindly that I know what it is, and that I have no use for the thought anymore. To keep investigating it is like poking at a cobra. If I don’t bother with it, it will go away eventually. I have poked and prodded this serpentine nagging in my mind for too long now.
I sense that the cobra is in the process of slowly slithering away. Without the cobra plaguing my mind, things are becoming clearer again. It feels like there is more spaciousness and more freedom to just be.