ProblemsFirst off I should probably note that people can think of the same events as challenges, problems, or hardships, each according to their disposition. Of course nothing is really good or bad, but some things can be thought of as wise and unwise. Those things which tend to create more misery and suffering for ourselves are probably unwise while those things which bring us lasting joy and satisfaction are probably more wise. In that sense, it is probably better to consider the problems which we are currently facing or have faced as challenges. They help us grow and can make life very sweet as we are fully engaged in doing our best. Of course when we a have choice to make, it is probably best (or wisest) to choose those actions which are likely to minimize the hardships for ourselves and those around us (though betraying our values would hardly be justified). After all, if no one made the effort to prepare and store food and other necessities, then there would be serious problems. However, once you have done what you can to create a good outcome, it is time to stop thinking of the problems as potential hardships but instead have faith that you will be provided for and appreciate the blessings that surround you (that is the wisest view under those circumstances). The other thing I have noticed is that the universe (or God if you prefer) tends to direct the problems that are available to those people and places where they will do the most good and cause the least harm. In that sense, you can minimize the problems which come into your life by creating challenges for yourself. If you are always fully engaged in life and trying to do your best (which normally means raising the bar for yourself on a regular basis), then there is little benefit from sending external problems in your direction. If instead, you are just coasting and taking things easy (beyond the period of recuperation which is appropriate after a period of intense growth and expansion), then you are inviting external problems to remind you of the importance of remaining fully engaged and focussed on doing your best. I have also noticed that if I don't pay attention to minor problems and close calls (like a close call when driving though no accident actually occurred), then more serious problems will come my way. If I neglect them, ever more serious problems will be drawn to me until, finally, I have no alternative but to shape up and take notice. Lastly, while it seems to me that the universe tends to direct problems where they will do the most good (or least harm), it also appears that the universe is always discreet, acting through coincidences and never really violating any laws. So, if, for example, many people drive when they are not alert (drunk and such) and without considerations for safety (not fastening their seat belts and such), then there will have to be a certain number of deaths and serious injuries. It is true that the deaths and injuries will tend toward where they can do the most good (or least harm), but the total number is pretty fixed by people's choices. One of the reasons for making wise choices (which try to minimize hardships) is that it can decrease the total number of problems that need to be dealt with. So, it is a wise person who makes wise choices when a decision needs to be made, avoiding hardships as they are able while remaining true to their values. Thereafter, the wise person views challenges as blessings and learns whatever they can from the problems they receive, but also creates challenges for themself, staying fully engaged in life, always doing their best without relying on the crutch of external problems. Click here to see the next rambling tale.
This page was last updated on March 8, 2008