Dealing With Adversity

Published: 08th January 2015 06:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th January 2015 12:31 AM   |  A+A-


BENGALURU: All human beings face the ups and downs of life. They are part of the human existence and cannot be avoided. The question is, are we going to lose our peace of mind and become unstable as we face these highs and lows on the roadway of life?

If we let ourselves become affected by everything that comes our way in life, we will feel as if we are on a perpetual roller coaster.

We will move from the heights of ecstasy to the depths of despair and back to ecstasy again from one moment to the next. These constant variations often lead to a sense of fear, anxiety, and panic because we never know what will happen next.

Over time, this state of fear and anxiety becomes a part of our nature and we are not able to relax. Since we do not seem to have much control over the ups and downs of life, how can we learn to live a life of peace and relaxation? The following story gives us some clue.

A king called together all his wise counsellors and advisors. He posed to them a question: “O advisors, I wish that my inner self were filled with stability. I find that I am always subject to the ups and downs of life and they throw me off balance. Can you find something that will help me feel joyful when in a state of unhappiness, and something that will remind me of sadness when I am in a state of happiness? Find me something that I can keep with me to help me stay in a calm, stable mood despite whatever is happening around me.”

The advisors put their heads together and thought long and hard about what the king requested. Finally, they came up with a solution. They went back to the king. The king saw them approaching with a small box. “We found a solution for you, O King,” the advisors said. “Open the box.”

When the king opened it, he found within a small ring. “Look at the inscription,” they told him. The inscription in the ring said, “This too shall pass.”

These four simple words helped the king and can help us maintain a sense of balance when we face the highs and lows of life. When we become too ecstatic and happy, we need to remember that things will not always be that way, and we should not be disappointed or depressed when the happy times pass. When we become too depressed or unhappy, these four words can serve as a reminder to us that the pain is only temporary, and happy days will come again.

We can stay at an even keel through the storms and sunny days of life by finding a calm centre. We can reach this still point through meditation and prayer. Within us are all the riches of divinity.

We are not just the body and the mind, but the soul. The soul is filled with Light, love, and joy. Why? Because it is connected all the time with the source of divinity, the creative Power, which is also all Light, love, and joy.

The creative Power and the soul are made of the same essence. If we spend some time daily within the silence of our soul, we will be connected with a place of bliss. Then the outer circumstances of our life will not affect us. We will not be troubled by the temporary phases of life.

We can learn to find a still center, filled with peace and balance, which will provide us with permanent happiness despite the outer variations of life.

Next time we face pain, remember that “This too shall pass.” Those four words may help us pass through the discomfort with more confidence and faith. It will remind us to find our still center of peace through meditation.

Next time we are in a state of great joy, remember that “This too shall pass,” so we can enjoy the moments and not grow depressed when they end. It will remind us that even if this joy ends and a hardship comes, other times of joy will one day return.

It will remind us to find our still center of peace through meditation, for that provides lasting happiness.


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