Picture two sisters, twins, twinkly-eyed visual copies of one another. As children, they experienced hardship of a variety that was far worse than experienced by many and far easier than many others. No matter the comparisons, though; their hardship was their own.
As they grew and learned, explored and read, evolved into their own unique humans, their way of meeting the hurt and jagged places within themselves diverged. One sister embraced the pain, believing she was living the Buddhist words of “life is suffering.” The other sister practiced swapping out the painful thoughts and feelings for gratitude practices and positive mantras, believing she was living the Law of Attraction.
The deeper they went into their practices, something happened, something like two matching snow globes being tipped then righted. Each snow globe created its own pattern of snow drifting through the viscous liquid, one swirling clockwise, the other sifting right back down ever so slowly. Once the snow settled, the globes were identical again.
And so it was with these twins who looked, for a time, as though they had gone from a matching pair to opposites. While the one took on a sullen appearance, the other smiled until her cheeks hurt. While one energetically engaged with stories of the world’s horrors, the other threw herself into noticing only the good.
The snow inevitably settles, though. And while the piles settled into different spots on the snow globe’s landscape, it would take a keen eye to notice the differences, just as it would take a keen eye to notice how these twins, again hardly distinguishable, still differed.
It would take a keen eye, indeed, to notice that one had lost touch with life’s meaning as the suffering became increasingly inevitable and impenetrable, while the other found herself disillusioned as the mantras and practices failed to blot the feelings of anger, sadness, judgment, and pain from her life and her being.
It’s true: Each had a meaningful piece of the puzzle for finding peace after (and amid) hardship. If only they had found their way to one another more fully and, in that way, opened up more of their own complexity.
In this week’s email to The Bigger Badder Crew, there’s more context and even actions to deepen this parable. Claim your spot here. Or jump right into the enlivening complexity with coaching support!