Your Story Teller as a Terrorist
By Allan Hardman

The Storytellers know it is their job to teach you their stories of fear

(Written after the attacks of 9/11)


Every human’s mind has a Storyteller... a small being who sits in the mind and tells stories to the human. That Storyteller is not there when the human is born. As soon as the new human is able to understand stories-- in tones of voice, facial expressions, and later with words -- the Storytellers living around that new human put the seeds of their stories into the mind of the new human. And they grow there, and become strong, and bear much fruit.

You were once a new human. When you popped into this world, the Storytellers knew it was their job to teach you their stories. Many of those stories were based on fear... fear that you will be rejected if you are not good enough, not smart enough, not rich enough, not beautiful enough, not handsome enough, not thin enough, just Not Enough. The Storytellers taught you that you had to be perfect in order to be accepted. The Storytellers taught you that nobody is perfect. Only God is perfect. They taught you that you could never be God, and yet you had to be perfect.

The storyteller's stories were often confusing, contradictory-- yet as a new human, you had no choice but to accept them as true. A fish living in water has no way of knowing air. A new human, living in that ocean of stories, has no way to know anything beyond those stories.

The nature of stories is that they are only true for the Storyteller who owns them. They are not true for anyone else. There cannot be a True story, or a Right story, or everyone would agree on everything. Even if everyone, everywhere, did agree, it would still be a story. It would be a description of the beliefs and agreements that were once learned and held in the mind. Only that, nothing more.

The recent events of terrorism in our country present us with a story from other Storytellers that is, in the context of our story, incomprehensible. The terrorists' Storytellers say that their goal is to create terror in us, to create terror in our lives, to teach us that we will never be safe again. Even the news media says America will never be the same -- they also teach us the terrorists' new story: "We will now live in fear and not be safe." The images of planes hitting buildings are now implanted in our minds, and the Storyteller tells stories about them over and over and over. The media compounds our fear, telling us stories of Anthrax and poisoning water supplies.

Every time the Storyteller tells a story about fear, every time your storyteller reads or listens to or watches a story about fear, it creates fear in the human mind. It creates terror in the human mind. Every time your Storyteller tells you a story that creates fear and terror in your mind, your storyteller has become a terrorist. Every time you are the terrorist, every time you allow your Storyteller to tell you a story that creates fear, the foreign terrorists have succeeded.

Of course there are terrorists in the world, because there is a terrorist in your mind: your Storyteller. Now your Storyteller has learned new stories with which to terrorize you even more than it used to. It used to terrorize you by telling you stories that said that you would not be loved unless you made more money or were slimmer or younger or had fewer wrinkles. But now your Storyteller is learning new stories about violent acts that you cannot predict or control, and you are probably feeling more fear.

It seems to me that the way to end terrorism is to end terrorism in our own minds, to quit believing the stories we tell ourselves that create fear and terror in our own minds. The fear that we feel is real, but the stories that we tell ourselves that create the fear are simply stories. You have a choice about what stories you allow your Storyteller to tell you. You have a choice about what stories to believe.

What stories are you choosing to believe? Are they stories that create fear and terror in your mind and your body? Or are they stories that create love, peace and harmony inside of you? You can choose. Maybe we can't eliminate terrorism in the world, maybe we can't find all the right people to kill so we can feel safe again. But perhaps we can, and do, have a choice not to be our own terrorists. Perhaps, when we are no longer terrorizing ourselves-- whether in fear about how much we weigh or in fear from imagining a story of an agonizing death caused by some foreign agent-- we can live in peace within ourselves. If we all live in peace with ourselves, surely we will live in peace with each other.

It is worth a try.



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Allan Hardman is an author and expert on personal and spiritual transformation, relationships, emotional healing-- and a Toltec Master in the lineage of don Miguel Ruiz, author of The Four Agreements.™ Allan teaches in Sonoma County, CA, and from “The House of the Eagles,” his winter home in Chacala, Nayarít, Mexico. He guides Journeys of the Spirit to sacred sites in Mexico, and hosts wellness vacations in Chacala. He is the author of The Everything Toltec Wisdom Book, and co-author of two books with Deepak Chopra, Caroline Myss, Dr. Andrew Weil, Prince Charles, and others. Visit Allan’s extensive website at, and TACO, his online spiritual membership community.