A long time ago in a mountainous region of China a farmer lived with his wife and son. He was known to the rest of the villagers as both wise and a little odd. They couldn’t quite understand him but they knew that he would always provide excellent advice in difficult situations.
One day, the farmer’s horse ran off to the mountains. His friends and neighbors all said, “What bad luck.”
But the farmer responded simply, “Bad, good, who’s to say?” and he and his son went out to the field and pulled the plow by hand without the help of the horse.
A few days later, the horse returned, and with him came a herd of wild horses. Then his friends and neighbors patted him on the back, smiled and said, “What good luck!” But the farmer responded simply, “Good, bad, who’s to say?” and he and his son hitched the horse up to the plow and went out to work the fields.
Several days later, his son was training one of the wild horses and he fell off and broke his leg. Then the friends and neighbors were sure that this time the farmer would agree that this was, indeed, very bad luck. But again, the farmer responded, “Bad, good, who’s to say?” and he went out to work the fields alone without the help of his son.
A couple of weeks later a contingent from the army came into the village and recruited all of the able bodied young men to help defend against an advancing army from a neighboring state.
Because the farmer’s son’s leg was broken he was left behind. Then the friends and neighbors wailed to the farmer about their bad luck and congratulated him on his good luck.
And, of course, the farmer just responded, “Good, bad, who’s to say?”
This old parable from China is a great reminder about the power of perception and the importance of going with the flow.
It also helps us remember to let go of our attachment to outcomes.
All of these things go a long way towards the creation of a life of TRUE Abundance.
It’s a wonderful little story to remember when obstacles and challenges show up in your life… but also when everything is going well.
What appears bad now may very well lead to some unexpected treasure in the future.
If you’re like me, you’ve had an experience or situation in the past that seemed unbearable at the time.
In fact, there may be times when you’ve actually wondered if those challenging circumstances WOULD pass!
Would the struggle, the pain, the challenge ever shift and transform?
There was a time in my life, not too long ago, when I wondered that very thing?
I was consciously seeking the long view and the perspective of the Chinese Farmer… but I often found myself – like the other villagers – looking at and judging my circumstances as good or bad… and at that moment in my life… it seemed to be mostly “bad!”
But here I am now… living proof that…
Everything passes. Everything really does shift.
And when I look back now, I understand that the struggle and all the circumstances I was judging as “bad” were exactly what I needed.
Even though, at the time, it sure didn’t feel very good, I see now that all of that struggle was actually the quickest path to a powerful awakening that has totally transformed my life.
Have you had an experience like that?
Where something that seemed “bad” at the time turned out to be a blessing in disguise?
Or are you, perhaps, in a “bad” situation right now that feels like it may never pass?
Remember… This Too Shall Pass!
It always does!
And remember also these wise words from another Chinese Sage, Lao Tsu:
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”
No matter where you are, no matter what your circumstances look like…
You are on a Magnificent Journey…
… and, even if you can’t see it, your next step is right in front of you!