Monday, July 8, 2013

How to Empty Your Cup

When I was thinking about emptying my cup, I remembered a story I had heard about.  Apparently, it happened in the Orient, since it involved a Zen master and a student.  The student came for advice from the master.  As it is tradition in the Orient, the master prepared tea and served it to the student.  When he was pouring tea into the pupil’s cup he continued pouring even after the cup was full to the brim.  At first the scholar didn’t say anything, but after a while he couldn’t be quiet any longer.  He mentioned to the master that the cup was overflowing.  Then, the master said: “You are like the cup.  I cannot give you any advice if you don’t empty your cup.”


I even found a short video depicting this teaching:


“Empty your cup so that it may be filled; become devoid to gain totality.”
~ Bruce Lee


Remembering this story made me think of my experience of the last couple of months.  As I am looking into my past, I became aware of how much my cup was already full.  Obviously, our cup is filled with everyday experiences and memories.  But our mind is also occupied with ideas and thoughts which are dragging us down.  And our heart if crammed with emotions like regret, resentment and fear which don’t allow us to move forward.


 “Neither do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.”
~Matthew 9:17

What are we to do to empty our cup?

è Empty Your Mind Daily

Repentance and letting go is like emptying a waste basket.  Life is a struggle and we experience it every day, especially in our own mind.  We play and repeat movies, conversations and other incidences over and over in our mind.  It takes great discipline to stay in the present moment and stop all that chatter. 

Repentance is an old religious practice but it is very effective.  When we empty ourselves before God, we don’t have to worry about things anymore.  When we surrender to God, we can be free.

Jesus said, “Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at Hand.” ~ Matthew 4:17

è Discharge negative emotions

There are many different therapies and techniques to release negative emotions.  I like using the Emotion Code which has helped me to let go of old baggage.

è Listen, really listen

To listen is to hear with once heart and mind.  It also is to listen to the small voice inside of ourselves.  This voice is connected directly to our creator, the source of our existence.  It also connects us deeply to another person.  In fact, to really listen one has to be empty of once own ideas.  “If you want to learn, you have to shut up, and LISTEN for a change."

I am exploring continuously how to empty my cup.  I am watching my little granddaughter who is 13 months old.  She has no concepts, no worries; she is without any prejudice; she may fall down one moment, and the next she is happy and running again.  She may cry in one instant, but she forgets quickly. No wonder, Jesus said, “Be ye like the little children” (Matthew 18:3).  

Live is a struggle because we have forgotten who we are.  When we continuously empty our cup we have a chance to fill it with the authenticity of our true self.

Let’s empty our cups often to receive all there is to receive.


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