Saturday, April 28, 2012

Sei Weng's Horse

Adrift on the Sea of Marmara near Istanbul
I had a conversation with a close friend of mine last week who had ended a relationship with her long-time partner.  She was distraught by the way events had occurred, which caused me to reflect on how we mark life's phases.  It seems that as we move from one phase to another they are separated by moments of great change and upheaval.  We look at these changes in the moment and more often than not classify them as either good or bad.

Years later when we look back on the sign posts that we have passed by our perspective is different, and those changes that we once thought were terrible moments in our lives actually turned out to be necessary for us to move forward and to grow as human beings.  Of course the opposite is true about moments that at the time seemed wonderful, yet years later we realized that without them our lives would have taken an altogether different turn.

It's similar to the Chinese story of Sei Weng's Horse which goes...
     This farmer had only one horse, and one day the horse ran away. The neighbors came to condole over his terrible loss. The farmer said, "What makes you think it is so terrible?"
     A month later, the horse came home--this time bringing with her two beautiful wild horses. The neighbors became excited at the farmer's good fortune. Such lovely strong horses! The farmer said, "What makes you think this is good fortune?" 
     The farmer's son was thrown from one of the wild horses and broke his leg. All the neighbors were very distressed. Such bad luck! The farmer said, "What makes you think it is bad?" 
     A war came, and every able-bodied man was conscripted and sent into battle. Only the farmer's son, because he had a broken leg, remained. The neighbors congratulated the farmer. "What makes you think this is good?" said the farmer.

I suppose my point is that our lives exist within the constant flow of change.  Everything all around us is changing from one micro-instant to the next.  It seems futile to attempt to freeze a moment of our lives and then classify it as good or bad, but of course that's what we try to do.  "Change happens."


daphne said...

Everything happens for a reason. .We must accept the fact that change happens. Just go with the flow :)

Cheap Flights said...

Change? we need to accept it. Why? it's destiny dear that we need to make a change in life. That's how life goes here on earth.