A Lesson in Surrender

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SANDIA CASINO, ALBUQUERQUE, NM—The day before yesterday, I tried to win at the casino. In less than two minutes, I lost $300 on a high-stakes slot machine.

An important point: I was trying to win. More below the break (huh?).

The next day—yesterday—as I walked through the casino, I found myself sitting down to a slot machine and practically before I knew what I was doing I slid a twenty into it. Two spins later, I had tripled my money.

I went to the cashier and cashed in.

I walked further on and came to the roulette table. While that table had always been crowded in the past, one side was wide open and only one other player stood there. Almost before I knew what I was doing, I said, “I’d like to put $100 on black.”

The wheel spun, the ball rolled and black won.

Before I knew what I was doing, I said, “Let it ride” and the guy standing next to me looked over, stared at me for a moment, then put his chips on various black numbers.

The wheel spun, the ball rolled, black hit and the other player shouted with joy as one of his numbers hit.

I picked up my $400 in chips and walked over to the same cashier. She said, “That was fast!” and I lied and I said, “I’m a lucky man.”

I don’t know how I would have explained the truth: that I’m hardly a man at all anymore—that I’m hardly anything anymore.

Then I did a test. I sat down at a slot machine, put in the $40 I was up over the last two days and I tried to win.

In less than a minute I lost the $40.

In the two days that I placed bets at the casino, I ended up breaking exactly even.

But here’s the lesson: Every time I tried to win, I lost. Every time I surrendered to Her whispers, I won.

Over the last few years I’ve seen this pattern repeated again and again and again: When I try, I lose. When I surrender, I win.

Surrender is like a leaf that falls into a stream. It just goes where the stream leads, neither struggling to reach the shore, nor trying to swim up river.

Your ego—your trying and struggling—blocks Her Light and silences Her whispers.

Surrender, open, and allow. Surrender and watch as your life starts to flow in miraculous ways.

The less there is of you, the more there is of Her.

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4 thoughts on “A Lesson in Surrender

  1. Great example, through action, that what you say is true, and that you live it.

    A similar example of what happens when I do not try, when I almost fade away, actually happened (to me?) today as well… mmm… so nice…. but still always a pleasant surprise to this one that is also sometimes almost not there.

    The evidence speaks for itself. It is beyond the realm of pure chance.

    Surrender is so strange, isn’t it? The recognition of it almost comes after the fact …(of not knowing what you were doing)

  2. @Mary Ann (Mary Ann is a former student): You make two very good points:

    1) Yes, we’ve got to LIVE it. Spirituality isn’t just about belief or theory. To truly understand it, to truly FEEL it, we must live it. I try to balance this blog with lived, personal experiences and teaching/theory, but maybe I need to put a bit more emphasis on the personal experiences. Thanks.

    2) “The recognition of it almost comes after the fact.” So true, indeed, this whole episode probably wouldn’t have happened had I “recognized” what I was doing beforehand. Thanks.

  3. Wayne, I can not tell you how this beautifully written post hit me today…..deeply. Thank you….surrendering, listening to the whispers is what needs to be done here….Thank you again

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