The glass is already broken

One day some people came to the master and asked ‘How can you be happy in a world of such impermanence? The master held up a glass and said ’Someone gave me this glass, and I really like this glass. It holds my water admirably and it glistens in the sunlight. I touch it and it rings! One day the wind may blow it off the shelf, or my elbow may knock it from the table. And I say, ‘Of course.’ When I understand that the glass is already broken, every moment with it is precious.

Life is always in a constant state of change. Everything that has a beginning and has an end. Life, relations, things will all wear out and crumble one day. A glass is created and will eventually break.

There is peace in this teaching. When we expect something to break, we’re not surprised or disappointed when it does. Instead of becoming immobilized with emotion when something is destroyed, we’ll feel grateful for the time we have had with it. Remembering this the next time we are upset or irritated will help us soothe our inner turmoil.

In the words of Leo Babauta:

What causes anger, stress is that things don’t go the way we expect them to. This time, expect that things will go wrong. And accept it. Expect your partner to be less than perfect, expect your friends to let you down, expect plans to go awry, expect people to be rude, expect colleagues to not do their share, expect the glass to break. And accept it.”

Didn’t they say, acceptance is the first step to conquer misfortune? When these inevitable facts happen, you’ll not get upset, you’ll smile and think “I expected that to happen”. And, you’ll have peace of mind.

  • Vinay Chaganti

    Makes me feel good, but at the same time there is something called as ‘Curse of Knowledge’. It is a glass we see through, and that makes it complicated; what do you say buddy?

    • Sai Krishna

      Could you be more specific?

      • Vinay Chaganti

        The line in the post “I expected that to happen” is supposed to make us feel good, but it actually may not. When we know what to expect, life only becomes more complicated.

    • Sai Krishna

      Hi Vinay, to clarify, “expecting things to fail” here means being prepared for the inevitable fact & not to suggest that one should live life expecting everyone will let you down. It’s a thin line between both. The curse of knowledge actually helps us in identifying patterns. So, the next time you see a scenario happening like last when you were let down, you know what’s coming.

  • Divya Lakkaraju

    very nicely written… very true…Accept the fact and enjoy every bit of it..:)

    • saikrishnakorivi

      Thanks Divya