© 2021 Kebba Buckley Button, MS, OM. World Rights Reserved.
We tend to think of things as good or bad— events, experiences, weather, choices– but do we know for sure? And how would we define “good” and “bad“? My Chinese locust tree buds and leafs out enthusiastically most of the year, here in Phoenix. It provides lush shade for parking in the late afternoon. But suddenly, in about December, all the leaves turn brown and fall away! They do this over a 3-day period. You’re thinking, “Oh no! This is bad! Is the tree sick?” But then, equally suddenly, about 6 weeks later, the tree begins to bud and leaf out again. And you never know exactly when this will happen.
There is a timeless parable about a Chinese rice farmer, that poses this question of good things vs. bad things. Here is Alan Watt’s summary of the story:
Once upon a time there was a Chinese farmer whose horse ran away. That evening, all of his neighbors came around to commiserate. They said, “We are so sorry to hear your horse has run away. This is most unfortunate.” The farmer said, “Maybe.” The next day the horse came back bringing seven wild horses with it, and in the evening everybody came back and said, “Oh, isn’t that lucky. What a great turn of events. You now have eight horses!” The farmer again said, “Maybe.”
The following day his son tried to break one of the horses, and while riding it, he was thrown and broke his leg. The neighbors then said, “Oh dear, that’s too bad,” and the farmer responded, “Maybe.” The next day the conscription officers came around to conscript people into the army, and they rejected his son because he had a broken leg. Again all the neighbors came around and said, “Isn’t that great!” Again, he said, “Maybe.”
The whole process of nature is an integrated process of immense complexity, and it’s really impossible to tell whether anything that happens in it is good or bad — because you never know what will be the consequence of the misfortune; or, you never know what will be the consequences of good fortune.
As each thing happened, the Chinese farmer declined to judge its nature. He simply accepted what was. In today’s terms, he gave no energy to judging or reacting to each event. He remained calm and allowed events to unfold. I have heard a version in which the farmer always says, “Good thing, bad thing–who knows?” and another in which he says, “We’ll see.” I have many times seen people judge and assume, then get upset and burn a lot of energy– only to find out events were unfolding in their favor. Where do you want to put your energy?
Have you ever caught yourself “rushing to judgement” and realized you had totally wasted your frustration energy? How about the times when you thought you had lost your keys, you panicked, and at last, the keys showed up near where they should have been? Choose where you put your energy, judge not, and you’ll be more and more Healthy, Happy, and Loving Lifesm! It’s up to you!
Kebba Buckley Button, MS, OM, is a stress solutions expert, holistic guide, and award-winning author who celebrates life. She has a longtime energy healing practice and is an ordained minister. Among her books are: Discover The Secret Energized You (http://tinyurl.com/b44v3br), Inspirations for Peace Within: Quotes and Images to Uplift and Inspire, and Sacred Meditation: Embracing the Divine. The books are available on Amazon and through Kebba’s office. To email us, firstname.lastname@example.org .