Saturday, February 13, 2016

A larger whole...........................

      Whatever you're going through, whatever is holding you down or standing in your way, can be turned into a source of strength - by thinking of people other than yourself.  You won't have time to think of your own suffering because there are other people suffering and you're focused on them.
      Pride can be broken.  Toughness has its limits.  But a desire to help?  No harshness, no deprivation, no toil should interfere with our empathy towards others.  Compassion is always an option.  Camaraderie as well.  That's a power of the will that can never be taken away, only relinquished.
      Stop pretending that what you're going through is somehow special or unfair.  Whatever trouble you're having - no matter how difficult - is not some unique misfortune picked out especially for you.  It just is what it is.
      This kind of myopia is what convinces us, to our own detriment, that we're the center of the universe.  When really, there is a world beyond our own personal experience filled with people who have dealt with worse.  We're not special or unique simply by virtue of being.  We're all, at varying points in our lives, the subject of random and often incomprehensible events.
      Reminding ourselves of this is another way of being a bit more selfless.
      You can always remember that a decade earlier, a century earlier, a millennium earlier, someone just like you stood right where you are and felt very similar things, struggling with the very same thoughts.  They had no idea that you would exist, but you know that they did.  And a century from now, someone will be in your exact same position, once more.
      Embrace this power, this sense of being part of a larger whole.  It is an exhilarating thought.  Let it envelop you.  We're all just humans, doing the best we can.  We're all just trying to survive, and in the process, inch the world forward a little bit.
      Help your fellow humans thrive and survive, contribute your little bit to the universe before it swallows you up, and be happy with that.  Lend a hand to others.  Be strong for them, and it will make you stronger.

-Ryan Holiday,  The Obstacle Is The Way:  The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph

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