Only in the darkness
can you see the stars.
~Martin Luther King, Jr. or Ralph Waldo Emerson (or maybe no one important but it’s still true)*
Remember that adage look on the bright side?
We’re not used to looking for the gifts in bad situations. It’s counter-intuitive, isn’t it? When bad things happen, well, they’re BAD. There’s nothing good about bad things.
Or is there?
I know people with serious illness or disabilities who say that their disease or disability has been their greatest teacher. They wouldn’t wish it on anyone, but since it’s the card they drew, they’ve found a view of it that serves them in a positive way.
My own compassion has been deepened by the close-up experience I’ve had with terminally ill family, friends and clients. While I grieve those losses still, they’ve served me in important ways, catapulting me to find a way to be of loving service to them and also to the world.
It’s the toxic relationships and friendships I’ve had that have allowed me to see gifts in other relationships that I might have taken for granted.
We find some of our deepest lessons in contrast, in polar opposites, the yin and yang, the dark and light, the negative and positive.
Look for the bright side: something we should make every effort to remind ourselves of when things get tough.
*It’s getting increasingly difficult to determine the origin of beautiful quotes like these because they are attributed to multiple people. Original source documents are almost impossible to find.