The Mountain

By Steve Priester

Change always begins within—in the mind where we create our thoughts.

Two men approach a mountain. One man is fancily attired, very serious and has a sense of sureness about him; his focus is outward. The other man is in simple dress, relaxed, with a sense of peace about him; his focus is inward.

The man in the colorful robe, with a gold crown on his head, holds out his crosier and proclaims, “If I had but the faith of a mustard seed, I could move that mountain!” He believes what he sees with his eyes, and he wants to change the world. His vision is clouded and narrow, and he believes the world is full of problems only he can solve. His mind is always busy, jumping from one thought to another. There is little time for being.

The man in the hooded robe with a walking stick calmly says, “I have the faith of a mustard seed, and that mountain is exactly where it’s supposed to be!” He knows that All is in Divine Order. He sees with a quiet mind, listens to the silence, and knows beyond doubt that All is Perfect always. His vision is clear and wide. His mind has never forgotten the peace it once knew.

Which man are you like?

Do you see a world full of violence and injustice? Do you see hatred, anger and indifference? If the mountain is to be moved, who will decide where it is to go? Imagine the wars being fought over where the mountain should be. If the world is changed, how will the lessons of the mountain be learned? What if our ultimate lesson is that the mountain just “is”?

Or, do you see a world full of love and kindness? Do you see compassion, acceptance and tolerance? If the mountain is a majestic wonder of nature, then there is no need to move it. What if the lesson of the mountain has nothing to do with the mountain but everything to do with us? The mountain is only an obstacle if we want to transverse it; otherwise, it just “is.”

There has always been talk of changing the world: discussion of raising consciousness and ascension and global awakening. Earth has been referred to as a “dark planet,” or the “school,” where the hard lessons of life are learned. A planet where humans experience the whole gamut of thoughts, feelings and actions. A planet where the power of our thoughts interacts with our free will and the hormonal mixture of the human body. This is the human experience. If we change it, we must recognize that we are also altering the learning opportunities that Earth offers us.

  • How do you learn peace if there is no war?
  • How do you learn acceptance if no one judges?
  • What if the world is perfect for the lessons to be learned?
  • How would growth be achieved in an evolved world?
  • What would we learn in nirvana?

Many Masters have come to Earth to guide us along our journey. They have taught by example, always urging us to turn inward. Why? Perhaps they knew that change always begins within—in the mind where we create our thoughts. The thoughts of our choosing. No one can control our thoughts unless we agree—freewill is that powerful. The Masters knew that if we changed our thoughts, the world would follow. Why? Because they knew that we truly see with our minds and not our eyes.

The mountain looks very different when seen through the eyes of a quiet mind rather than a busy mind.

The eyes trick us by reacting instantaneously with the mind—so fast that the perception is the eyes saw objectively, when in reality the mind saw subjectively. “I saw without thinking,” you might say, but are you sure? Have you ever met anyone who thinks just like you? If we were all seeing the same world with our eyes, and not with our minds, then wouldn’t there be more agreement about what we see? This disagreement is the result of our inner thoughts influencing what we see.

The quiet mind sees a mountain that just “is”. There is no need to move the mountain, or even judge or have an opinion about the mountain.

The busy mind dictates that we must have an opinion about everything, that the “problems” of the world need to be fixed, and that we have the answer on how to accomplish this.

The quiet mind sees differently. The quiet mind knows that peace is found in acceptance, not resistance. This mind is so quiet and calm, that it is able to intuitively know that the world seen with the eyes is only a projection of the mind—a quiet mind sees a peaceful world while a busy mind sees a world of problems and distractions.

Both men view the same physical mountain, but that is where the similarity ends, for their interpretations are individual.

Each man projects his inner thoughts through the vision of his eyes. While one man believes, the other man knows. The busy mind is full of beliefs, while the quiet mind is empty of thoughts. The challenge for the busy mind is to understand the quiet mind; to overcome the persuasive assumption that there is an objective reality—that there is a “right” way to see the world. As the mind continues to quiet, however, peace starts to fill the void that thoughts used to occupy. Eventually the desire to change the world diminishes. Then comes the day when the “problems” are no longer seen; not with the eyes or the mind. The mountain is still there, but “All is Well” in the world.


Steve Priester’s spiritual journey has included various spiritual paths, including A Course In Miracles, Zen, and mediumship. He teaches The Spiritual Path, and speaks to metaphysical groups on several topics. Steve can be reached at


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