Map and a Blindfold

I am walking down a long path in the woods. I don’t know how long it is, but it’s definitely long, and I’m only at the beginning of it. All around me are people having fun and laughing, and I have to walk down this long road that for all I know could lead me nowhere. The only thing is, I can’t see the people – I can only hear them. You see, I’m blindfolded and all I can see is darkness.

I was given a map from a mysterious man at the start of the pathway. He is also the one who gave me this blindfold and told me to put it on. When I asked him why, he didn’t answer, but pointed at the path… so I put the blindfold on, took the map, and started walking. I could feel the coarse, wrinkled map in my hand and when I lifted it up to my nose, I could smell the scent of old parchment, but I still could not see this map. I walked on this path for years and years. Along the way, my feet got dirty and sore, I got tired and thirsty, but I never allowed myself to rest. “There will be plenty of time to rest when I get to the end of the road” I thought to myself. A few more years went by and I started feeling helpless. I started to question if the man led me in the wrong direction, or if I had happened to wander off the path.

Just as I was about to give up and lay down for the rest of my life, a light shown through my blindfold. This was the first time I had seen light since I started my journey. As I looked around I could see the path around me. I was still in the woods where I had started, but as I looked behind me I could not see the old man. I had traveled a long way in the years that I had been walking. As I continued to look around some more, I realized that I still had the map in my hands.

The moment had finally come. I looked down at the map and saw it, the way to the end of the road, so it had all become clear to me… and I followed the map.

***

If you have not already made the connection, this journey is a lot like life. When you’re born, you immediately get set off on this journey on a path through the woods. Everyone is handed a map and a blindfold but it takes a lot of walking (hard work) to finally get that ray of light to show itself to you. The sunshine represents that first big breakthrough in life. In this breakthrough you realize what you want to do with yourself, and those who don’t stop to rest see it earlier and more clearer. If you keep walking, you will eventually see through the blindfold and everything on the map will become visible – you should follow that map, don’t think twice and listen to that gut of yours.

If I were you, I wouldn’t stop to rest. Time is wonderful, time is precious, but it is valuable. It is limited. Keep walking.

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