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Cory Muscara



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Good Luck, Bad Luck, Who Knows?

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hey, welcome back to

your Daily Mindfulness.

Today, we're going to talk about

how to approach our moments

with greater balance and ease.

I'll start by sharing a short Zen story.

There once was an old farmer who

used a horse to till his fields.

One day though, the horse escaped

into the hills, nowhere to be found.

Out of sympathy, the neighbors came by and

said, "We're so sorry for your bad luck."

The farmer replied.

"Bad luck, good luck.

Who knows?"

A week later, the horse returned from the

hills with a herd of horse friends, and

now the farmer had all of this extra help.

Of course, the neighbors

came by to congratulate him.

"What great luck you have," they said.

Again, his reply, "Good luck, bad luck.

Who knows."

Several days later, as the farmer's

son was attempting to tame one

of the wild horses, he fell

off its back and broke his leg.

Again, the neighbors stopped by.

"We're so sorry to hear about

this bad luck," they said.

His reaction, "Bad luck, good luck.

Who knows?"

A month later, the army marched into

the village and conscripted every

able-bodied youth they could find.

When they saw the farmer's

son with his broken leg, they

let him off and continued on.

After the army left, the

neighbors ran to the farmer.

"Wow, what great luck you have."

And can you guess the farmer's response?

"Good luck, bad luck.

Who knows?"

I don't know about you, but

when I hear that story, I get a

warm, cozy feeling inside of me.

You know, so often we, we resist the

negative experiences because we think

they'll make our life worse or we grasp

for the positive experiences thinking

they will provide our permanent refuge.

What would it be like to instead

take the perspective of the farmer,

trusting that things may be happening

for reasons we can't yet understand?

Sometimes the most awful things

turn out to be the most important

moments in our lives and vice versa.

Trauma can lead to growth.

An exciting new job can lead

to a work-life you hate.

Cancer can lead to a new

appreciation for life.

A new house might lead

to terrible neighbors.

A breakup can lead to

a new life trajectory.

Instead of trying to control

everything, can we move with the

flow of life, seeing where it takes

us and what we can learn from it?

Is it good luck?

Is it bad luck?

Who knows.

But the opposite perspective is

trying to live a life in certainty,

and that's an endless quest.

So try to bring this

perspective into your life.

As always, thank you for your

practice and I'll talk to you soon.

Take care.

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