Once a master with his disciple was passing from a dense forest. Precisely in the middle of the forest, they encountered a big brown bear. The bear seemed like he had not eaten in days and was reduced to a skeleton.
The disciple got scared, but at the same time, he knew that he could never outrun a hungry bear. He realized that neither he nor the Master had any weapon or even a stick to scare off the bear.
He slowly turned towards the Master and spoke, ” My Master, I really don’t want to die. But this bear seems hungry and ready to devour us. You are the Master and have a solution to every problem. I am sure you can think of something which can save our life. Should we run? Or fight the bear? I have even heard the stories of lying breathless to escape the bear. But my mind is full of fear right now and is not able to think through. I will do as you suggest.”
The Master who was standing silent and fearless till now smiled and said, “Do nothing. Keep quiet and don’t move.” He then sat down with closed eyes on the ground.
The disciple did not understand what Master was doing, but he had no other option except to do exactly what his Master had told him to.
A few seconds passed. The bear was inching closer with each passing movement. The disciple’s heart was pounding with more force with bear’s every step. When the bear was just a few inches away, he suddenly stopped. He remained there for a few seconds, then turned, and walked away.
The Master opened his eyes and stood up again. The disciple fell at his Master’s feet and asked, “If I haven’t been a witness to this myself, I would have never believed it. Tell me how you did it?
The Master replied, “It is very simple; I silenced my mind and connected to the energy of the universe. We humans, trees, animals, air, water, hills, and everything else have the same life energy. We all are one but have the illusion of being separate. When I connected with that one energy which flows in everyone, I hugged it with love and compassion. Or to be more clear, I hugged the bear. He instinctively got the message that we are harmless for him.”
The disciple who was hearing all this begged his Master to teach him how to be one with the universe. The Master nodded, and they carried their rest of the journey through the forest with a feeling that the trees they were passing by, the birds they were listening to, and the air they were feeling on their face are not separate but one.
If we all could realize and experience that we all are one, then all the problems of the world would disappear. We pollute the mother earth, we waste the water, we poach the animals, we smuggle their body parts, and we clear the habitat of birds, insects, and animals. Only if we realized that they are not something to be used for our benefits, but the same energy materialized in different forms, then we would have been more compassionate. It is not late yet; we still have time to mend our ways.