12 December 2009

Exploring the Rooms at the Top

I don't think I've ever heard of a joyful cynic, or a happy misanthrope. Not even one who was enviably rich and successful, and blessed with an uncanny eye for opportunity. And I'm sure I've never met anyone whose happiness - whose joy in living - did not include at least some capacity to enjoy other people, and other people's happiness. At least on some occasions. Why is that, I wonder?

Whatever the reason, may I share with you something I've been suspecting for quite a long time (albeit my manner of suggestion may be a mite too bold and categorical for some tastes)?

There is no human creature we meet in the flesh who is not an opportunity. The most randomly irrelevant individual we meet is a priceless invitation to gain Something hardly any of us seeks expressly or consciously - though there is not one of us who does not long for It in the quieted deeps of our souls, in a secret place, and language, whose music no human words could ever express. The sorriest human being you or I know, then, is much more than an opportunity to exercise patience, or even kindness. The most wretched excuse for man, woman or child you can think of is also an irreplaceable chance: - a golden opportunity, for both you and me, to invest, and grow, and prosper. But in what?

Not necessarily in anything material, though that too may come with time. But, for now, simply in that most exquisitely attentive and appreciative depth of Knowledge, that richly brocaded strand of Wealth, that modest, mostly unapplauded, yet utterly satisfying peak of Success we call love.

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