think that most of us react so strongly to sadness or
despair partly because we're afraid that the conditions
that have caused the feelings will last forever.
When sadness comes along, when depression hits, when we
feel a lack of hope that things will get better, it's very
easy to get caught in the trap of losing sight of the good
in life, losing our ability to see the bright sides of our
lives. And once we lose sight of those things, it's
logical to fear that they'll never come back.
when night comes, we don't enter into a fit of despair out
of fear that the day won't return. The darkness is
easy to deal with when we're sure that the light will
return. Carl is saying here that even in our darkest
hours, we should keep in mind always that our bright hours
and days shall return--and if we do keep that idea in
mind, the darker hours won't seem nearly as dreadful, and
they won't be able to pull us down nearly as far.
things will happen to me. People I know will
die. People I know will be hospitalized and will
have bad things happen to them. My patience and my
ability to see the beauty in life will be tried.
People I know will offend me and try to hurt me. But
no matter what may come, my own feelings are tempered by
my perspective--the way I feel is up to me, not to these
situations. If I can respond to anything that
happens with the realistic perspective that "This,
too, shall pass," then I'm setting myself up for much
less misery during my trying times.
is balance, in many ways. We can consciously balance
our feelings and our reactions to outside stimuli in order
to keep ourselves seeing the reality of our
situation--that life is full of cycles, and that this
negative part of the cycle will soon give way to the more
positive elements of my life. And those positive
parts haven't even left--I just see them less clearly now.