ONE of my Titas forwarded a video to me. There was a man who was photocopying a piece of paper that had a big black hole in the middle. It was like the Japanese flag but in this case it was black. Then he discovered something interesting. If he placed his hand in the hole, it went through. He saw a vending machine and posted the piece of paper against the machine. He placed his hand in and true enough, he was able to get a piece of candy. Fascinated by this he looked around and then he remembered that there was a vault in the other room. So he goes to the room and does the same thing. He pastes the paper against the vault and pushes his hand in when he pulls out his hand he is holding a wad of dollars. He is so happy that he keeps on pushing his hand in and out and the result is the same. More and more money. Finally realizing he could no longer contain himself, he does the unthinkable. He pushes his whole body inside the vault. The moment he slips in the vault, the piece of paper falls off, trapping him inside. In space a black hole the concept is the same. There is an area in which gravity is so strong that everything is sucked in. Not even light can escape. That man may as well have been in the vise of a black hole. The pull of greed was too much.
What has you in its grip? That would have an infinity of justifications, but only a single answer. There is only one thing that holds you captive and the rest are mere defenses.
Take your pick. Greed. Power. Pride. Ambition. Materialism. Fear. Generational curses. Everything stems from a single source and all that a person does is feed the monster. And that is why we are so blind and deaf to everything that surrounds us. We have accepted that we are imprisoned and we justify everything else by saying so many things even if what we say does not make sense anymore. We can justify anything because we are prisoners of it.
If you look at that video story the man could have stopped actually but because it consumed him, he could not see anything else. Or refused to. There is this famous Zen story about a thief who got caught stealing gold from a window in broad daylight. He was asked why he did it and he said, I did not see anything else. I only saw the gold. Exactly. When the vise grips you, you only see the gold. Put that in daily living. I only saw my hate. I only saw my ambition. I only saw my anger. And the list goes on. So again, what holds you in its grip?