If the Sun never went down and if there was no night, there’d be no life on Earth. The surface wouldn’t cool down enough to sustain atmosphere. The night is as essential for nurturing all forms of life, just as the day is.
Similarly, what would life be if there is no sorrow in it. Just like permanent illumination, perennial joy and happiness will be blinding and fatal too.
We are so consumed by the idea of seeking perpetual happiness that we try and block ourselves from a whole range of emotions that may stem from unhappy situations and incidents in life. Our propensity to indulge in one form of pleasure or the other, forces us to look for escape routes from difficult situations in life. This further diminishes our ability to cope up with things that are less appealing to our senses and instead of facing issues head-on, we end up being evasive all our lives.
The truth remains, that we will never be truly happy, for come what may, we will continue to pander and scrape through the days of our lives using easy, accessible means. We will continue to build barriers within us, forbidding ourselves to be in touch with our real miserable selves. Given that we are easily satiated when our physiological, safety or emotional needs are met, the real meaning of ‘joy forever’ will always remain elusive to mankind.
Sadness on the other hand, leads you to embark on a journey into your inner depths. It is often only in a moment of sorrow, that one unravels his or her true calling. Sadness provides us an opportunity to experience emotions that prevent us from becoming indurate imbeciles. It propels a person to search for an anchor and find one’s ground. Sadness instigates people to reach out to others, look for help (medical and social) and very often discover bonds, that last a lifetime.
I often wonder, why there are no self-help books available on how to cope up with one’s happiness but there is no dearth of material about how to deal with sadness. Why is it difficult for people to embrace, what is perhaps, the most honest and strongest emotion embedded in our psyche? One can mistake sympathy for love, simple pleasure for happiness but there is hardly ever a misreading about sadness. People feel sad when they lose something – a person, pet, a thing that was dear or of value (emotional or financial). The loss reveals how much we wanted what we lost. We bask in the memories of what we once shared and then find ourselves connected to the universe either through our tears, our prayers or in close company of other people, friends or family.
Isn’t that bonding, the longing for what was lost, sublime and beautiful in its own right? The notes of melancholy, touch the strings of our heart like no music can or ever will. The song of life is nothing more but a composition of these high and low notes. Denying ourselves this somber serenity in the disguise of a sad event is like abnegating ourselves from being human.
The beauty that is sadness, dwells in this range of gray that helps us keep our balance, maintain our humility and binds us back to the mortality of this world and its belongings.
Accept it, embrace it and revel in it…
“There is something beautiful in reveling in sadness.
The proof is how beautiful sad songs can be.
I don’t think being sad is to be avoided.
It’s apathy and boredom you want to avoid.
But feeling anything is good, I think.”
- Joseph Gordon-Levitt