another anecdote from The Conference of the Birds by Farid-ud-Din Attar...

The Grateful Slave

One day a good-natured king gave a rare and beautiful fruit to a slave, who tasted it and thereupon said that never in his life had he eaten anything so delicious. This made the king wish to try it himself, and he asked the slave for a piece. But when he put it into his mouth he found it very bitter and he raised his eyebrows in astonishment. The slave said: 'Sire, since I have received so many gifts at your hand how can I complain of one bitter fruit? Seeing that you shower benefits on me, why should one bitterness estrange me from you?'

So...if you experience suffering in your striving, be persuaded that it can be a treasure for you.


donnaj said...

Bad(suffering) is not always bad.

Brian Reiter said...

Here's the atheist version.

"Out of life’s school of war: What does not destroy me, makes me stronger."
Friedrich Nietzsche, Twilight of the Idols, 1888

"Did you ever say yes to one joy? Oh my friends, then you also said yes to all pain. All things are linked, entwined, enamored..."
Friedrich Nietzsche, Thus Spake Zarathustra: A Book for All and None, 1896