Question:I am still pretty young, at 21. But these past years living as an adult I find it interesting as we progress as humans and our views change on different subjects. In the above quote, how do you understand this quote? and if you know who said it?
I don't know who said it, but doing a little looking around at the phrase it seems as if it stems philosophically from Aristotle. I think philosophy is interesting, but tends to end up talking in circles without direction.
I agree that as humans move through the various stages of life, our views change somewhat. I'm 47, so perhaps my views may be different than yours, but maybe our dialogue can help us both think through this interesting phrase in a new way.
Here's how I understand the quote:
I think that life is full of joy and suffering. We can in our response to the events of life either become hedonistic and seek only pleasurable circumstances or become a victim and dwell on only the hardness of life. However, for nearly all people--no matter what our socioeconomic status or location, have a mixture of both good and bad in life. That's part of what makes us stronger as a person and to learn compassion for others. The good helps us to celebrate life and learn to love others for who they are, regardless of our differences.
As a Christian, I believe that both good and bad exist and that God uses the circumstances of our lives to help draw us to Him. As I was reading some of the philosophies that stem from your quote, I came across an interesting idea called the Doctrine of Double Effect, which says that good can come out of bad things that happen to us. I am full of hope for the future and tend to be the ultimate optimist, so I do believe that good results can come out of a difficult circumstance.
I'm sorry if I seem a bit rambly. Your question was a good one. Thanks for helping me think a bit tonight.
Your quote is fairly general- it would be difficult to pin down the true, original source. Arguably, humans have known this for an unquantifiable number of years.
There are several examples I could find you of paraphrases on this quote. Notably, from August Wilson's play "Fences," in which protagonist Troy Maxson's motto is, "You gotta take the crookeds with the straights."
Troy, as a baseball player, is using that particular context to describe the universal life experiences of sacrifice and adaptation. Sometimes you have to give up something you want for something you need, or someone you love for their own happiness. There are all sorts of examples, some occurring frequently in life, and some occurring once if at all. I needn't give you a laundry list to make my point.
I understand this quote to be a healthy, realistic approach to life's tribulations. To paraphrase La Rae, "Life is like a swing. Sometimes it swings good, sometimes bad. If it never swings bad, we won't know how it felt [when it swings good]."
Life is 10% of what happens to you, and 90% on how you react to it. We all have ups and downs, it's just some choose to deal with it, and others just get upset. I take something bad and i try to see the good in it, being positive in anything you do is a huge help, getting upset at something is not going to sovle it.
Life is what you make it; take the good with the bad.
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