MISFORTUNE: Failure, Disppointment, and Death

Be you the ever optimistic, spiritually centered, karmically aligned, zen guru, or the cynical, wrong side of the bed waking, pessimist bad things happen. Even good things happen that we don’t expect that can cause negative side effects. It was important to me that we breach the topic if misfortune only after we discussed perspective. Without perspective even the best things are negative, but with it we have the chance to view the worst events in our lives and in human history with, at very least the opportunity to learn and at most a view of the silver lining.

Success could be simply described as the moments when intent +action = the expected result. With that basis for success all the other beautiful analogies about what it may or may not be fall away. When a result other than what you intended comes from your actions you have some thing to deal with. How you cope with the unexpected result is one of the things we will discuss this month. Are the type of person to “spin” failure, like Thomas Edison. He famously quoted as saying “I have not failed, I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” But, when time is not your friend you may only have one chance to find out what will work.

The same goes for relationships with other people, partnerships crumble, marriages fall apart, and even family bonds break. Events like these are never ones we wish for but they are an undeniable reality in our world. The little bird that jumps from the tree hoping to fly must face this reality just as the young entrepreneur when he takes a leap into business with his life savings. The artist must stare into the eyes of failure before debuting a new work. We will kiss the lips of risk as does the princess to the frog, while we journey down the halls of disappointment. Because sometimes the fair tale does not end happily ever after and we must be prepared for that.

When our loved ones, pass we have developed costumes the world over for dealing with their transition to death. It will interest the theologists among us to dive into the answers religion offers us and how that effects us and our various cultures. We will hear from those working in the death industry as we seek to understand what it is like to be surrounded by death on a daily basis and if that effects the individuals view of it.

The challenge we all face is coping with the loss and disappointment and how we, as a community, support those in grieving. Avoiding the issue serves no one so we must be self critical in our thinking and seek to find understanding and self-resolution as well. Do funerals help anyone? What is the purpose, and are we executing them well?

We are ever ambitious this month, but in Winter things die, we will challenging ourselves to wade through this topic as we push toward the new year.

As always, I appreciate you joining us.


Maceo Paisley



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