They are nourished and physically supported by the water in which they live. It flows through their gills, giving life and energy through the oxygen it contains, providing an environment in which these beautiful creatures can thrive, play and procreate. The water is their universe, their entire reality, and it provides for their every need. It is where they belong.
Now, imagine what would happen to one of these fish if it became afraid of the very environment which nourished and supported it. And as a response to this fear, it allowed its gills to close partly. The warm, nourishing ocean waters could no longer flow so freely through them and could not provide the oxygen, the basic nourishment, that the fish relied upon for it’s energy, vitality, joy and playfulness. The fish began to feel separated from its school, no longer feeling the sense of freedom which they felt. No longer did it have the energy to keep up with their joyful movements and it began to isolate itself, feeling that perhaps it did not belong with them. Perhaps its destiny lay elsewhere? Through its doubting, the fish closed its gills even more and became totally blind to the benevolent nature of its beautiful habitat, not feeling its nourishment, rejecting its importance. The fish took itself away from its school and began to search for this missing sense of nourishment elsewhere, forgetting that it could only come from the very substance it was immersed in. Of course, it could never find a replacement for the nourishment of the ocean waters, and it’s searching only increased the distance from the school, only brought a sense of hopelessness and futility.
Yet all this creature needs to do is to open it’s gills, to allow itself to once more be nourished by the warm, life-giving ocean waters that it depends upon. It’s vitality and sense of freedom would return in an instant and it would remember the purpose of existence. Once again it would become part of its school and move joyfully through the ocean waters with a sense of belonging, a sense of peace and trust in the benevolence and providence of the reality in which it was immersed.
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