The irony of life

The irony of life

It takes bitterness to know sweetness, it takes the darkness of a tunnel to feel the light of the sun, it takes the glamour of youth to understand the grace of wrinkled age, it takes the beauty of the rose to understand the ugliness of the thorn. It takes a writer's block to understand the glory of outpouring of words, it takes the pain of sickness to experience the relief of wellbeing.

It takes rank hatred to understand the power of love, it takes wickedness to understand simple goodness, it takes the problem of plenty to understand the joys of frugality. It takes the barren earth to feel the refreshing drops of rain, it takes the labour of a woman to beget the wonderful fruit of her labour. It takes death to value life.

It takes greed to understand the sacrifice of all things material, it takes ignorance to understand the joys of learning, it takes deprivation to understand contentment, it takes littleness to understand large-heartedness, it takes cruelty to understand the healing power of mercy. It takes a Man to be impaled on a cross to rescue the world and forgive mankind its iniquities.

It is only when you experience loneliness in a crowd that you can experience the glory of solitude on a mountaintop. It takes simplicity to understand all things complex. It takes noise to understand the soothing sound of silence. There are temples and cathedrals so ancient that they are forever new.  

Every saint has a past, every sinner has a future. The flower sheds fragrance at the heel that has crushed it. The small bird carries the vast sky on its back. Even as we are dying, the world is coming to life emphasising its continuity. Every stranger is our kin by the tie of human brotherhood.

We may live individually but we can only survive collectively. The stars will always shine, the flowers will always bloom and the grass will always be green, the enduring realities of life as against our private joys and sorrows. It is part of being human to experience and understand the "contraries" of life. We all require devotion to something more than ourselves for our lives to be endurable.

The earth is but a dot in the universe. Carl Sagan has this to say "you look at it, it is a dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. Every inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every superstar, every supreme leader, every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there on a mote of dust, suspended on a sunbeam." That such a little planet can harbour so much passion!

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