You need chaos in your soul to give birth to a dancing star.
Pain. Happiness. Of late I’ve been thinking about pain and happiness more and more often. It seems natural to want more of the latter unless you’re into the S & M scene. Even then I guess the goal is happiness via pain. It gets confusing.
Many of my friends and family are going through tough spots right now. Some are grieving, some have health issues, and some are going through major life transitions such as retirement. These common life events come with many unknowns, thereby causing fear and suffering.
It then occurred to me that much of what brings us happiness is the result of pain. What? How does that work? Well, think about it. Spring follows the cold and barren winter. A newborn child enters this world after labor pains. An educational degree or career promotion typically happens after much hard work.
I have a vague memory of an episode of the Twilight Zone where a man–a bad man–dies. He is shocked to find he has gone to heaven. Everything he wants is there for his pleasure. Women, sex, food, drink, drugs, and gambling. Over time having everything becomes, well, boring. There were no challenges. No thrill of risky behaviors. No failures to balance the riches. He starts to go insane. It was then that he realized he wasn’t in heaven. He was in hell.
As I ponder the heard times I try to keep in mind that unpleasant and scary events are necessary for growth. Like Jack Pine seeds, we all need a little fire to unleash our potential.