Sunday, March 10, 2013

Surviving a less than perfect life 苦中作乐

Though I know it is almost impossible to achieve perfectness (except in Street Fighter), it doesn’t means I didn’t try to make life perfect, or at least aiming to achieve something much better than the current state. I try to get better grades in school (did I?), change job in search of the better career, turn my life upside-down in realizing my dream, learning to live a meaningful life without regrets, etc.

What happens when things didn’t get better, but getting worse? What if we stumbled upon some problems, which couldn’t be solved immediately, but might take years or the problem could never go away all together? This reminds me of Beautiful Mind: where John Nash couldn’t get rid of his imaginary friends, but realize the fact that his imaginary friends are not real.

As much as we desire only happiness in life, we also have to accept life does comes with certain dosage of uncertainty and challenges which crop up from times to times. Sometimes it just took some planning and effort to solve these challenges, and sometimes we get some stubborn challenges with no obvious solution in sight. Even though we manage to clear the level this time, something bigger and more badass might appear the next time around.

How do we live with this “problematic” life? Perhaps I find wisdom in a Chinese proverb 苦中作乐, which means finding happiness within hardship. In a certain sense, we can’t prevent shit from happening, but we certainly can control how we react towards it. And most of the time, despite the shit that is happening, it’s a probably just a small part of our life that we over magnify it. I believe another problem is that we don’t like the fact the shit stick on us, it makes us feel uneasy and want to get rid of it immediately, but we can’t, at least not so fast, and that leads to further frustration. In a certain sense, I believe we have make peace with shit and have a ceasefire treaty, until the time is right to finish it off, or maybe not.

Living an imperfect life, might be the journey required to lead a perfect life. Without frustration, happiness shall have a lesser value.

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