One simple step toward happiness every day for a year. Doesn't everyone want to be happy?
Join us on Facebook (more about these "Secrets")

Friday, September 11, 2009

Learn that Life Isn't Fair

When I was a kid, I was blessed with a whole parade of smart, interesting, dedicated teachers.

And not a few of them were some pret-ty odd birds.

One of those was Mr. Kupper, my 10th-grade biology teacher.

He was a font of clich├ęs, having mastered the teacherly art of getting maximum response with minimum words.

One of my classmates, Stuart Seymour, was a bit hyper in class. (I've changed his name to protect him). Mr. Kupper could calm him with the simple phrase: "Sober up, Seymour."

But the phrase that really stuck in my mind was far deeper than that.

Remember, we were 15 or 16, and had that heightened sense of justice (or, more accurately, injustice) that comes at that age. More than once, I whined out "Mr. Kupper! That's not fair!"

And he replied with these soothing (?) words: "Nothing's fair, Jim. Nothing's fair."

Nowadays, I read Buddhism. And these words, verses by the Third Patriarch of Chan (Zen) stick in my mind:

The Great Way is not difficult
for those who have no preferences.

"Fair" and "unfair" often come down to a matter of preferences. Learn to let go of those, and guess what?

You'll be happier.

No comments:

Post a Comment