The Silver Platter Principle

“Riches, both material and spiritual, can choke you if you do not use them fairly. Let us remain as empty as possible so that God can fill us up. God does not impose himself on us. Even God cannot put anything in a heart that is already full. …Fill the world with the love God has bestowed on you.” 

-Mother Teresa

I am a seeker and a messenger. What do I seek for? Truth. And when I find it, it often transforms into a message burning inside me, and all I want to do is to share that message. Reader, you are a seeker too, or you wouldn’t be spending your time reading right now. I’m going to let you in on something. The secret to obtaining more truth is … be a messenger as well.

Truth (which I’ll refer to as “gold nuggets”) is bigger and purer than we humans. It originates from our higher power, and is given to us as we seek it in order to do good. My higher power is God, whom I call my Heavenly Father. He sends me these gold nuggets of truth and knowledge, usually by means of other people, through teaching and example. The process is very simple. For example, someone will recommend a certain book, author, practice, or training program, and I’ll feel something like an itch I can’t scratch until I’ve taken the necessary action, and the truth I find from that source changes my life in some way. I know it’s no coincidence. 

Sometimes I’m given a gold nugget as a result of asking for it specifically, but other times it feels like it just comes to me freely. When this happens, I ponder on these questions: For what reason did this knowledge come into my life at this time? What am I meant to do with this knowledge? To whom am I supposed to teach this truth? The answers to these questions make me feel profoundly humbled and greatly loved, simultaneously. 

However, when I know that I need to share these gold nuggets with others, and I choose instead to keep them to myself, I start to feel something akin to depression. I feel selfish for holding back this truth, which enriches my own life so much, from others, depriving their lives through omission. This is my motivation for starting a blog. (While one-on-one mentoring is an ideal setting for teaching these principles and motivating change, I can only influence a limited number of people in such a way.)

The “Silver Platter” is simply a way to visualize what you can choose to do with the knowledge and truth that comes to you. I picture myself holding a large oblique silver platter on my forearms. Gold nuggets are placed on my platter. Eventually they become heaped up so high that I have no room left, and some of the nuggets begin to fall from the platter. I instinctively tip the platter in toward myself, to keep them from falling off, and to allow more to continue to heap up. But it cannot continue this way. I feel increasingly burdened as I try to balance and hold the weight, and I feel a sense of loss over each new nugget that falls before I can even catch a glimpse of it.

So what’s the alternative? As the nuggets come to my platter, instead of tipping it toward myself, as I’m naturally inclined to do, I will tip the platter away from myself, into the hands of others. My platter will soon become empty, but each nugget I shared makes an impression on me that I will have forever, without needing to continue to bear the burden of its weight. What’s more, the platter never stays empty after being tipping out. The next time, I notice twice the number of nuggets of insights and ideas coming to my platter, even more brilliant and pure than the first had been. I tip those out as well, and the next time, it’s threefold, and then fourfold. I will have enriched myself more than I ever thought possible, and enriching all those around me who were willing to receive. I also feel weightless and unencumbered by the responsibility to share.

I aspire to tipping my silver platter out to you, readers, through this blog. I hope that the tools, insights, and principles you find here will benefit you as they have me. And I hope that you remember to tip your own platters out at every chance you get, because that’s when life truly becomes yummy!

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