This story comes from the ancient Hindu philosophical texts called the Upanishads, dating perhaps more than 2500 years ago. It integrates the powerful imagery of two birds, in dialogue.
There are two birds who are sitting on the same tree, inseparable and best friends.
The first bird eats from the Tree of Life, sweet and sour fruits alike, chattering incessantly.
The second bird just watches.
The first bird is your practical self, your monkey mind that chatters about everything, fearing, judging, analyzing and acting. This is the seat many of us take for most of our lives, where we spend our reality in our non-thinking minds. This bird is in the spotlight of attention all the time, running circles around the second bird.
The second bird is the watcher, checking out everything that happens in your life. That’s all this bird does.
It watches everything, judging nothing.
It has no opinion of anything, nor does it have a memory. It is like a mirror, just receiving, keeping nothing. This is the undiscovered part of you which has always been there. By turning your attention to it, and being aware of it, you will shift. This is the act of meditation when you shift to this seat. It is the place where you reside over the ocean of bliss. You can go there anytime you want. With practice, this will become a natural space, putting you in control as you just quietly watch everything with calm and centering presence.
Shift to the seat of the second bird and make it become second nature to your being. Once you are in that seat, no one can take that away from you. And that’s empowering!
“Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change.”
~ Wayne W. Dyer ~