A lotus is a beautiful flower that plunges to life from beneath the mud. As it elevates and rises it does not allow the dirt that surrounds it to affect its growth or beauty. Its spiritual symbol is of purity, enlightenment, self-regeneration and rebirth
In part one of my book, which is about backpacking around the world for 20 years, I was swimming around in the dirtiest water through shadows and darkness, getting addicted to every pleasure and always grasping for more. I was like the roots of the lotus pushing my way through the mud.
Part two is how I managed to finally stab and prod my way through that mud and slowly attain the wisdom and discipline to cut my addictions and develop more kindness and compassion, especially for myself. It was a long hard trail, and I often sunk back into the swampy mud but eventually, I broke through and slowly began to open my petals one by one to become a lotus.
We all have the potential to push through the mud and become a lotus, no matter how much dirt and mud is surrounding us or holding us back. But first and more importantly, you have to want to!
You need to get to know yourself, love yourself, forgive yourself, definitely laugh at yourself and change your mind-stream. That takes a lot of discipline and effort. Through studying the Dharma I learnt the tools that helped me to stop following my thoughts and emotions that lead me along the wrong path.
Just because you think it, doesn’t mean it is true.