As I walked through the forest at night, I saw a deadly snake lying coiled beside me on the path. As my fear grew, I could see more and more clearly its stripes and the way its head swayed from side to side as its tongue flicked out from between its fangs. Just before I ran for my life, I remembered something. Earlier that day I had dropped a length of rope somewhere on this path as I traveled along it.
Laughing at my fear and my own mistake, my terror melted away to be replaced by confidence in the fact that this was my rope, allowing me to step forward and retrieve it. But as I picked up the end of the rope and it coiled around my arm, I realized that it was in fact a snake that I held, helpless and unable to bite, in my hand.