Surrender: The Secret of Inner Peace

Hungry Gopher Tortoise

Hungry Gopher Tortoise

WICKHAM CP, FL—As a way of getting what you want, surrender sounds completely counterintuitive, but if what you want is inner peace (and who doesn’t?), then there’s probably no better skill to learn than the simple art of surrender.

Here’s the secret to surrender, something they don’t tell you about in our me-me-me society: The key to winning through surrender is simply not to fight in the first place.

It’s harder to let go than it is to leave alone.

It’s harder to say, “I quit,” than it is to say, “No thanks.”

It’s harder to acquire than it is to flow.

We are constantly presented with things we don’t want to do but, for whatever reasons, need to be done. The way I see it, you have three options:

  1. Don’t do it even though you know you should (fighting/resisting = inner conflict)
  2. Do it and focus on how much you hate doing it (fighting/resisting = inner conflict)
  3. Do it, surrender to it, and, ala Zen’s mindfulness practice, focus on the subtle beauty of what you are doing (surrender/presence = inner peace)


  • If you are having a hard time starting a task, then you are focused on you and not on the task before you.
  • If you are resisting, try to notice your conditioning: “I want. I want. I want.” Once you see it, it is a lot easier to drop it.
  • If you still find yourself thinking about a completed task, then you are attached to the outcome. Surrender that too.

But of course the easiest way to surrender—to experience deep inner peace—is to not start fighting it in the first place. Just do, as the Tao Te Ching says, what needs to be done.

Therefore the sage goes about doing nothing, teaching no talking.
The ten thousand things rise and fall without cease,
Creating, yet not possessing,
Working, yet not taking credit,
Work is done, then forgotten.
Therefore it lasts forever.

Tao Te Ching

The less there is of you, the more there is of Her (Tao).


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