From Stories of the Spirit, Stories of the Heart edited by Christina Feldman and Jack Kornfield, p. 283 (from a parable of the Dalai Lama, written by Pierre Delattre):
Once when the spirit of a famous guru appeared to heal a small, discordant community of monks. All the monks had seen the spirit come out of the wall long enough to utter just one word. But each monk had ahead a different word. The event is immortalized in this poem:
The one who wanted to die heard live.
The one who wanted to live heard die.
The one who wanted to take heard give.
The one who wanted to give heard keep.
The one who was always alert heard sleep.
The one who was always asleep heard wake.
The one who wanted to leave heard stay.
The one who wanted to stay, depart.
The one who never spoke heard preach.
The one who always preached heard pray.
Each one learned how he had been
In someone else’s way.
I imagine that this reservation started from my years of teaching yoga in a gym setting, where my main philosophy/goal was to share yoga AND be completely accessible and not turn anyone off who was (they thought!) just coming in to “stretch their hamstrings”, for example. Or maybe it came from my initial enthusiasm on the spiritual path, many years ago, when sharing my insights and realizations with my friends and family had them just looking at me blankly or not having any response, or worse, just changing the conversation. Maybe it comes from an inborn disposition toward being a hermit, or a “social hermit” as one of my very intuitive teachers and friends said about me. Whatever the cause, it is something that is in me.