It’s Better to Light A Candle Than Curse The Darkness
This is an old adage full of modern value. At first thought, what is darkness and why curse it? In metaphorical terms, we can understand that darkness speaks to hard, harsh, or troubling times. Instances where our outlook seems dim or bleak. Perhaps you’re suffering loss, hardship, or shame. Perhaps you feel unwanted, forgotten, or alone. Darkness sucks, and it is a space that all too many of us know.
Cursing the darkness would then mean lamenting over your situation, throwing childish tantrums, or blaming others for everything wrong in your life. Sound familiar? Each one of us, whether knowingly or not, have played out this destructive pattern all throughout our lives. Some of us may even be in the pits of a fit right this very moment. We need to be mindful of this negative tendency, because this is no different from any other repetitive practice. Over time, our habits become our nature, and our nature becomes our fate.
The other thought to this idiom is that of the candle. In this light, the candle is a call to action. It is an incentive to stop complaining and actually do something constructive about our troubles. The candle reminds us to stand tall and bright amidst the dark of night and to be an illumined light of possibility for ourselves and others.
With maturity, we may grow to learn that it is not our circumstance that defines us, but rather our response to it. The difference between being a victim or a victor is no more than a state of mind. Fate may deal the worst of hands, but destiny can always play to our favor if we keep a positive outlook and endure our darkness with dignity and diligence. Cursing a circumstance only adds dark to dark. Light comes from keeping an optimistic perspective and taking consistent, practical actions towards resolve.
Lean In On It
To live is to suffer. From the trauma of birth, to the struggle of death, and every hard step in-between. All of us know pain, all of us know loss, all of us know fear, hopelessness, and doubt. We’ve all stood alone in the dark before. There is no point in comparing oppressions or tallying traumas. Blaming, justifying, and complaining only begets more of the same. Big people have big problems, so get over yourself. You’re not measured by what you endure, but by what you compost and transform.
A spring will not bounce till pressed. An arrow won’t shoot until it is first pulled back. Without heat and pressure, coal will never become a diamond. Not only do we all feel hardship, but we all need it too. The reality is that we need stress to grow. We need contrast and adversity to overcome and conquer. Why curse the very thing that could help you evolve. There are no challenges along the path of self discovery, only opportunities.
The Way of Sages
From this view, suffering ain’t so sad. Perhaps we may prefer comfort and ease, but there is no growth there either. Along the path of self discovery we can use pain and discomfort as a navigation tool. Instead of escaping pain, some may even choose to actively confront their suffering and seek out all their shadows one by one. The dark cave you’re scared to enter holds the hidden treasure you seek. So don’t curse your demons, light a candle and embrace them, how else will you grow?