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The Mountain of Dreams

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Alison Knowles

Spring 2016

The Mountain of Dreams


The remarkable ruck sack

We all carry ruck sacks around full of stuff about our story, funny thing is we fill it with loss, guilt, sorrow, lack of self-worth and it’s heavy.

There was a village at the foot of a mountain called the village of not much happening.
The mountain that rose above it was called the mountain of dreams.

The village was full of people with very heavy ruck sacks. There was not much to do in the village – people somehow just got through their days. Everyone knew that the mountain was the mountain of dreams and that if you climbed it wonderful things would happen, but few tried as the mountain was steep and their ruck sacks were very heavy. They believed they wouldn’t get far and would probably fall off the mountain due to the weight of their ruck sack – so they stayed put in their ok world of not much happening.

One man who lived in the village and also had a huge ruck sack, one he thought bigger than everyone else’s, was never content to be stuck in the village. He felt inside that he did not have to stay there that there was more to him. So one day he started to climb and he made it, after years of struggle, to a low ledge overlooking the village. It gave him fresher air and allowed his mind to breathe. He was happy with that and pleased with what he achieved, having climbed a hundred foot or so. He stayed there for years – just above the village of not much happening.

Every day he watched others from beyond his village climb up, spend a bit of time with him, then continue on up the mountain of dreams.

But this man was no fool, he knew how treacherous the mountain was and that he had done better than he thought getting this far. His ledge was safe and to try to climb any further would take away the little fresh air he had gained, for he would surely fall.

For years he stayed put, then one day he had an idea – such a brilliant idea, he knew it was a winner!

He shouted about it from his not so high up ledge and a few people heard him and agreed it was a brilliant idea! After a while the man became frustrated because he knew not enough people would hear about his idea from such a low ledge – but to risk climbing…

After a year it got too much, he wanted to share his idea and so he put his ruck sack over his shoulder and began to climb.

He climbed for months and finally reached the last part of the climb to the summit. But the ruck sack had exhausted him, he collapsed under it’s weight, convinced that was his lot as he stumbled and fell.

He woke two days later in a tent surrounded by others who had climbed as high as him.

“What happened?” He asked bewildered.

“You collapsed and would have fallen off the mountain if your ruck sack had not caught on a rock and held you till we got to you.”

“My ruck sack.” Said the man frantically searching for it…

“Oh it got torn under your weight, I am afraid you lost everything in it – we saw it all tumble down the mountain.”

“You saw what was in my ruck sack?” Said the man, suddenly very afraid and ashamed.

“Yes, and I have to say, I found this climb really tough, but to see what you were carrying and you made it up here, well that’s just fantastic! Most would not have even tried!! In spite of all that weight you still got here!”

The man couldn’t believe what he was hearing, the others weren’t disgusted or repulsed by what was in his ruck sack. They seemed genuinely proud of him for getting this far with it. In fact, they seemed to notice noting about the content only how heavy it must have been!

One of the other climbers said, “We will go and try and collect the stuff that fell out of your ruck sack if you want?”

“No.” Said the man, it seems it was time to let it go.

The next day the man and the other climbers reached the summit. It’s true it seems that last mile is the hardest and yet the easiest.

“Everybody’s got a past. The past does not equal the future unless you live there.” Tony Robbins