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Caught in the devil's snare


In Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, Harry, Ron and Hermione get caught in the devil's snare after they go through the trap door under the three-headed dog. The more they struggle to disentangle themselves from the plant, the tighter it coils around them, beginning to suffocate them.

The trick to disentangle themselves is, however, to do the opposite that comes to their mind in that state of panic. Rather than struggle harder to escape, they need to lie still and play into the hands (or coils) of the devil's snare until it completely engulfs them momentarily before letting them slip out of the other end.

It is not uncommon for us to find ourselves in situations that aren't too dissimilar to getting caught in the devil's snare. Be it at work, be it while dealing with a government official, be it with our acquaintances, we end up in situations where we feel suffocated and have everyone and everything going against us and what we believe to be right.

And we struggle and struggle hard in such situations. We fight back and try to make our point and try to voice our opinions and have things turn our way. But the harder we try, the more we tend to antagonise the other party who further stiffen their resolve and come at us even harder.

Just like the devil's snare.

Instead, we need to do the counter-intuitive thing and calmly accept what comes our way, let it embrace us and engulf us completely, only to then let it spit us out the other end.

It will be painful for a while, and it will take incredible resolve to not fight back and smile and stay calm. But that's the only way out.

Staying calm and waiting for the turn to tide is harder to do than to fight back. It takes a great deal of patience and courage.

But it works.

Remember the devil's snare.

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