Locked In

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The hardest prison to escape is in our mind.



Near the beginning of his career, the great magician Harry Houdini traveled throughout Europe visiting small towns, where he would challenge local jailers to bind him in a straitjacket and lock him in a cell.  Again and again, he delighted the crowds with his quick escapes from seemingly impossible restraints.

But in one small Irish village he ran into trouble.  In front of an avid group of townspeople and news reporters, Houdini easily broke free of his straitjacket, yet despite his repeated efforts to solve the puzzle of the lock, he failed to open the cell door.

After everyone had left, Houdini asked the jailer, “What kind of new lock did you have on your cell?” “Oh,” said the jailer, “It’s a very ordinary lock.  I figured that you’d have no difficulty opening it….so I never bothered to lock it!”

Houdini falsely assumed that he was trapped, and his very effects to free himself had locked him in.

Houdini, like all of us, perpetually assume that life is a problem or that something is wrong and we spend a lot of our energy trying to fix it or escape from it.

Our challenge is to find the story or the belief that keeps us locked in.  It’s only when this inner dialogue and story is silenced, that we finally realize that the cell door is already open and that we have always been free.

43 thoughts on “Locked In

  1. Profound and true words of how our minds take over our thoughts, Karen and the great magician too could not come out from his mind. We have to take a great leap forward from our egoistic thoughts.. Great post

  2. I figured that the cell itself was unlocked – what a great and true story – just this morning I discussed with Hero Husband that I have very little control over the stuff that passes in my mind (at night mind you – I‘ve nothing better to do – while other more normal people sleep, I‘m ‚out‘ to save the world. With very little result for the world but disastrous ones for myself)

      1. Karen; you’re not the only one saying that – I wish that for every person who told me to write a book I’d have – well, let’s say – a pound/Euro/Dollar/Swiss Franc – I could probably pay for a 2nd class ticket to anywhere ….. But I’m not that kind of person and I don’t need to save the world just myself. That’s work enough, believwe me! 🙂

  3. Oh my, what a wonderful Houdini story! A lock, a box, we are so easily confined. Perhaps we should view the box around us as a cat would: snuggle in but be ready to leap out, because when not inside, a box can be viewed as merely a toy.

    1. So true Emily! We are so easily convinced we are confined and most of the time we accept that’s all there is!! Happy New Year! May we leap out into 2019 and embrace our abundance and freedom 💕💚✨

  4. Love this story for its many levels. Happy New Year Karen! I hope you got away to somewhere fabulous this year. Its good to hear your voice again. 💕

    1. Happy New Year lovely Val!! Just returned from Vanuatu! A beautiful space to be with nature and re-connect and nurture. I hope 2019 brings you abundance and peace 💕💚✨

  5. Great story, Karen. It reminds me of the power of assumptions to become the boulders we fall over…and we are the very ones who put them there! Indeed our minds are powerful. Happy New Year!

  6. I just have come back to this post because it’s nearly haunting me…. I have decided for 2019 – not as a resolution, mind you – Just to be Happy….
    One of HH’s preferred sayings is Tout est dans la tête / It’s all a matter of your mind…. and much of our doings and undoings certainly are!

  7. Oh, I love this one! And had never heard that story before. I’ve been thinking a lot lately of filters and how they color our world. Trying to do a few small things in new way to avoid the Houdini effect:). Happy New Year!

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