一、The art of living is to know when to hold fast and when to let go. For life is a paradox: it enjoins us to cling to its many gifts even while it ordains their eventual relinquishment. The rabbis of old put it this way: “A man comes to this world with his fist clenched, but when he dies, his hand is open.”
Surely we ought to hold fast to life, for it is wondrous, and full of a beauty that breaks through every pore of God’s own earth. We know that this is so, but all too often we recognize this truth only in our backward glance when we remember what was and then suddenly realize that it is no more.
We remember a beauty that faded, a love that waned. But we remember with far greater pain that we did not see that beauty when it flowered, that we failed to respond with love when it was tendered.
Here then is the first pole of life’s paradoxical demands on us: Never too busy for the wonder and the awe of life. Be reverent before each dawning day. Embrace each hour. Seize each golden minute.
Hold fast to life... but not so fast that you cannot let go. This is the second side of life’s coin, the opposite pole of its paradox: we must accept our losses, and learn how to let go.
This is not an easy lesson to learn, especially when we are young and think that the world is ours to command, that whatever we desire with the full force of our passionate being can, nay, will be ours. But then life moves along to confront us with realities, and slowly but surely this truth dawns upon us.
At every stage of life we sustain losses—and grow in the process. We begin our independent lives only when we emerge from the womb and lose its protective shelter. We enter a progression of schools, then we leave our mothers and fathers and our childhood homes. We get married and have children and then have to let them go. We confront the death of our parents and our spouses. We face the gradual or not so gradual waning of our strength. And ultimately, as the parable of the open and closed hand suggests, we must confront the inevitability of our own demise, losing ourselves as it were, all that we were or dreamed to be.
二、Once upon a time there was an island where all the feelings lived: Happiness, Sadness, Knowledge, and all the others, including Love. One day it was announced to all of the feelings that the island was going to sink to the bottom of the ocean. So all the feeling sprepared their boats to leave .
Love was the only one that stayed. She wanted to preserve the island paradise until the last possible moment. When the island was almost totally under, love decided it was time to leave. She began looking for someone to ask for help.
Just then Richness was passing by in a grand boat. Love asked, "Richness, can I come with you on your boat?" Richness answered, "I'm sorry, but there is a lot of silver and gold on my boat and there would be no room for you anywhere."
Then Love decided to ask Vanity for help who was passing by in a beautiful vessel. Love cried out, "Vanity, help me please!" "I can't help you," Vanity said, "You are all wet and will damage my beautiful boat."
Next, Love saw Sadness passingby. Love said, "Sadness, please let me go with you." Sadness answered, "Love, I'm sorry, but, I just need to be alone now."
Then, Love saw Happiness. Love cried out, "Happiness, please take me with you." But Happiness was so overjoyed that he didn't hear Love calling to him.
Love began to cry. Then, she heard a voice say, "Come Love, I will take you with me." It was an elder. Love felt so blessed and overjoyed that she forgot to ask the elder his name. When they arrived on land the elder went on his way. Love realized how much she owed the elder.
Love then found Knowledge and asked, "Who was it that helped me?" "It was Time,' Knowledge answered. "But why did Time help me when no one else would? "Love asked. Knowledge smiled and with deep wisdom and sincerity, answered, "Because only Time is capable of understanding how great Loveis.