Saturday, October 29, 2005


We are not measured by the adversity in our lives. We are measured by our reaction to it. You can decide to see the positive, happy, useful side to everything that happens in your life if you want to. The crises in our lives shape the circumstances by which we can learn. We can learn to overcome them, or if we don't, we have at least learned our limits, haven't we? We grow stronger in either case though.

Also, on a different train of thought, it is not the tree's fault which type of soil it's seed was planted into, or how much water or sun it had, or how many storms it had to weather. It, like all of us, is at the mercy of the caprice of nature. The tree is not weak if it dies. It is not brave to withstand a storm. The tree simply exists. It is what it is - and it does the best it can under the circumstances.
It is a model of stoic reality. We should grow as much as we can, stretch as far as we can and overcome obstacles and circumstance as much as we can, and then we have become all we can become - we are what we are. Once we accept that, and do not pine for what we are not, then we can relax and be happy with our circumstance. Some of the most beautiful trees grow in the most unlikely places. And there is something admirable in every tree.

Also, I have noticed that when I focus on the beauty and the talents and the pure high value I see in the other people around me, I feel better about myself. It makes me happier. And that value is always there. For every flaw I have seen in anyone I have known, there has always been redeeming qualities in them to compensate to at least some degree. If I focus on those qualities, they seem better to me, and I can enjoy them, and I find that brings out the best in them. People respond better when you show them that you see the best in them. Then we are BOTH happier.

If you are unhappy at any given time because something bad has happened, or circumstances are not what you wish they were, consider this: Are you still whole? Or are you broken? if so, how broken are you? Are you a drug addict? Are you an alcoholic? Do you have a debilitating mental or physical illness? Are you terminally ill with something?
Unless you are about to die momentarily, chances are that things are not too far gone - and you still have time to make them better. Where there is life there is hope. While there is time, there are always possibilities.

A man I know used to be a real estate agent, and he once told me an interesting lesson about people being married vs being single. When he dealt with people and was trying to sell them a house he noticed that when a person was single, they could make all the decisions themselves. They could decide where to live, what kind of house to get, what mortgage to get, etc. They were usually strong, decisive, and in control. But once they got married, now the decisions were split between two people - first out of courtesy and consideration, and later out of need. As if it takes two people to make a whole now. Neither person could do much alone without the other. They each had shrunk back into only being half a person, in a sense. But once they were divorced or separated and living alone again, they grew out to becoming a complete person again.
So there are compensations to everything and a good side to almost anything that happens - even including death.
Whenever someone dies, there are usually people left behind who loved them and miss them. But sometimes the absence of the person who died makes the ones left behind grow to become a little stronger, more resilient, a little more independent. The strong tree grows deeper roots to compensate for the rocky soil. And then when a really rough storm comes along later, those deep roots hold that tree strong against the force of wind and rain. So there are usually good aspects if we think about it.

Perspective means so much, doesn't it?


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