Thursday, May 22, 2008

Training an Elephant

At the Introduction to the Landmark Forum last night, Ravi told the one about how you train an elephant. It goes something like this. "Have you ever been to a circus? Have you seen big elephants tied up with little ropes around their necks? Do you know how they train that elephant? They get it when it's young and tie it with a rope and stake it to the ground. The elephant isn't strong enough to break the rope but tries and tries and can't get free. So the elephant gives up and believes that it isn't strong enough to break the rope. By the time the elephant is actually strong enough to break that little rope, it believes that it can't and doesn't even try."

When we're kids, we learn about where we're limited and tied down and we struggle and in some areas we give up, get resigned, and learn our place.

It did make me wonder about where I'm being limited and where I'd like to "break through." It's time to check the ropes and give another tug.


lo said...

I like this theory and the analogy. I can totaly wrap my head around it. I see it at my daughter's school. She goes to Montessori school and it's all about 'doing' because you want to-also about autonomy and doing for yourself and learning for yourself and not 'letting' others decide or dictate! It's amazing!

Jamine said...

He mentioned another one about training fleas. He said to train fleas you put them in a jar with the lid on and they'll try to jump out but keep hitting the lid. Then after 10-15 minutes you can open the lid and the fleas won't jump out. It's something to fit in and have a "stable" society, but if we're not living full lives to our potential then there's something off. My opinion!

lo said...

I agree with THAT opinion. We were just talking about that at home in relation to children and social interactions, playdates and parties-when to 'conform' and when not to. When to jump thru hoops we wouldn't normally entertain and when not to AND when we have to for the 'greater good.':)