How Joy and Sorrow are Inseperable

How Joy and Sorrow are InseperableAs the month of May with its sun and colours is upon us, I can’t help but think of all the opposites our life is full of.

“God turns you from one feeling to another and teaches by means of opposites so that you will have two wings to fly, not one” ~ Rumi

Light and dark, night and day, happy and sad, negative and positive.

One is incomplete or rather unappreciated without the other.

An everyday example of Opposites namely Joy and Sorrow: About 10 days back, my beloved laptop crashed all of a sudden. My laptop crashing meant a sudden standstill to all my online work, which made me sad. In those moments when I was trying to revive the laptop all I could feel was sad. I kept thinking of all the online counseling sessions scheduled, all the articles I had to write, which in that moment I thought I couldnt keep or do cause of this unfortunate event. But, as I let the laptop go into the hands of the computer guy, it suddenly dawned on me…”I can use the desktop or my mobile till I get the laptop fixed.”….hooray! I had a plan..and before you know it, I was back to work within the day. Yes, the mobile/tab is straining on the eyes..only for a short time though. I kept telling myself “Soon the laptop will be back and I will be sorted again.”
A few days down and the computer guy came back with bad laptop was unfixable. So sadness came back. I thought this is a sign I need to buy a new laptop so went online to hunt for the prodigal one. Not being able to zero in on any model, I went over to my brother(computer wizard, 3D animator & director) to get his advice. And do you know what he told me? He said “Sister, I need to upgrade my pc. Do you want this one? Its my baby, I’d much rather you have it than sell it.”
In that precise moment my jaw dropped and my otherwise gloomy self literally shouted YES! His PC is a super computer but because his work demands it he just needs better specs for all the high end graphics work he is into. In my wildest dreams I couldnt put together a pc like his…and now it was going to be all mine! Woohoo Joy was back into me.

The Universe has plans for us even before we can think or fathom a solution.

The above simple example shows how opposites are a part of our everyday life. My immense joy on acquiring my brothers super computer was the complete opposite of what I felt when my laptop crashed. I wouldn’t have been able to truly enjoy this happiness, this joy had I already not experienced that sorrow of losing my beloved laptop. See, opposites…completely inseperable.

We cant appreciate the light if we havent seen the dark. Joy and sorrow are much the same way.

The Universe rewards us in the form of opposites, so that we may truly cherish each and appreciate both. I appreciate all the lessons I have learned from the many past traumas of my life, cause they make me truly enjoy and cherish the joy in my everyday now.

One of my favorite philosophers is Khalil GIbran (Poet, painter, writer, philosopher, theologian) rightly says:

Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.

And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears.
And how else can it be?

The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.

Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter’s oven?
And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives?

When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy.

When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.

Some of you say, “Joy is greater than sorrow,” and others say, “Nay, sorrow is the greater.”

But I say unto you, they are inseparable.

Together they come, and when one sits, alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.

Verily you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy.
Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.

For us to truly find a balance between these opposites, we must not only embrace these feelings but also work towards a certain feeling of calm..where even though I’m embracing and acknowledging these opposite feelings, I am not allowing them to wreck havoc on my core happiness.

I mightve been sad about the laptop crashing, but that didnt stop me from being me, or from enjoying my life. My heart, my inner serenity should be so strong that nothing and noone can come and wrench the daylights off of it.

Bringing the Power back to yourself is essential to attaining balance between these opposites.

A Positive Affirmation that helps me immensely in these yo yo times:

“I can choose happiness whenever I wish, no matter what my circumstances. I am Powerful.”

What are YOUR thoughts on this topic? Do you think we are surrounded by opposites? How have these opposites in your everyday affected you? Share your thoughts in the comments section. If youre reading this in your inbox Click Here to leave your comment. I’d love love love to hear from you!

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With Immense Love & Gratitude,

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9 thoughts on “How Joy and Sorrow are Inseperable

  1. martine912

    I love your affirmation Zeenat about choosing happiness no matter what is happening. We are living in yo-yo times and it takes a willing heart and mental discipline to persevere!

  2. Hi Zeenat,

    It is sorrow that introduces us to joy, the best of her friends…it is sorrow that makes us learn the value of joyous occasions…it sits and waits by the side of the hedge that we raise to protect ourselves from outside forces and while we rejoice in our successful endeavours, it smiles and moves along slowly, making us realise that she is the best of companions. While joy can betray us, sorrow never does! It never leaves our side, only we fail to recognise its perpetual love. If we embrace sorrow without any complaints, we can experience greater tranquility of thoughts and perpetual bliss.

    Thanks for sharing such a soulful thought.

  3. Swathi Gadepalli

    what a coincidence! last night i was thinking about the same concept, as i got to know that my friend lost her mother. i couldn’t understand why god allowed such things to happen. Hugs!

  4. Chris Burton

    I love the words, ‘the deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can obtain’! For some reason these words made me think of a special quotation a friend sent me;
    I spent a lot of time trying to fix you, but I never realized that you were breaking me.
    While I was putting your pieces back together, you were Ripping apart mine,
    But by the time I realized it. It was too late.
    And yes at the same time I was causing you stress!
    But was I Ripping apart your pieces, or was I sending you a message. One of hope, true love and the freedom to see yourself in a new light!

  5. Zeenat,
    Kahlil Gibran is one of my favorite poets and Joy and Sorrow is one of my very favorites. My other favorite is his one about children. I’m sure you’ve read that one, too. I should share that at Zen Mama! Thanks for the constant inspiration.

  6. Zeenat, Joy and Sorrow are indeed inseperable because our mind is constantly comparing people we meet, circumstances we encounter, our achievements etc to classify and put meaning to it. The result is the emotional states that we experience on a day to day basis.
    This see-saw of ups and downs will continue as a product of our mind (attachment / need). There’s nothing much we can do about it but practice acceptance(detachment/openness) which results in the calmness that you talk about.
    Thanks for the great pointer and also the amazing passage by Khalil Gibran.
    I would like to end with a couple of quotes :
    “The walls we build around us to keep sadness out also keeps out the joy.” – Jim Rohn
    “My happiness grows in direct proportion to my acceptance, and in inverse proportion to my expectations.” – Michael J. Fox
    Thank you.

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