I heard this today:
The person who is really on the way, falling upon hard times in the world, will not as a consequence turn to those friends who offer them refuge and comfort and encourage their old self to survive. Rather, they will seek out someone who faithfully and inexorably helps them to risk themselves, so that they may endure the difficulty and pass courageously through it. Only to the extent that a person exposes themselves over and over again to annihilation can that which is indestructible be found within them. In this daring lies dignity and the spirit of true awakening.
Karlfried von Durckheim
Food for thought.
If, like me, you subscribe to the understanding that 1) everything is as it should be and 2) everything happens for a reason, then it follows that, if you are going through hell, the fires of the forge will leave a new, purified you upon your emerging.
In the simplest of terms, adversity teaches you who you are.
I have long loved the maxim:
If you are going through hell, keep going.
Don’t turn back and decide it wasn’t for you; you’d rather sit and stagnate where you were. Don’t berate the universe for your terrible lot. Don’t run for the cover of old, tired, fruitless patterns of behaviour.
Remember this: Nothing is permanent. Everything changes. Life is a journey, with all the requisite bumps in the road: sometimes it takes you through the roughest part of town, and sometimes through breathtaking scenery. Joy and sorrow each have their part to play.
So, if you’re going through hell. Keep going. Don’t lose sight of your true self. Don’t sacrifice your integrity. Stay focused, don’t attach to the story, believe in yourself, believe in the bigger picture. Hold onto love, don’t give in to hate.
And one day, basking in the light at the end of that tunnel, a little older, a little wiser, the sorrows assimilated, the joys welcomed, you’ll look in the mirror and recognise the you that has always been.
And head off into the next unknown.