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Maybe so, maybe not. We’ll see.
April 11th, 2022

Have you heard the story of a Chinese farmer?

There are many stories you come across in life, but there are only a few that truly stay with you. I had never heard the story of a Chinese farmer until just a few years ago, and when I did, it almost instantly changed my outlook on life.

A farmer and his son had a beloved horse who helped the family earn a living. One day, the horse ran away and their neighbours exclaimed, “Your horse ran away, what terrible luck!” The farmer replied, “Maybe so, maybe not.”

A few days later, the horse returned home, leading a few wild horses back to the farm as well. The neighbours shouted out, “Your horse has returned, and brought several horses home with him. What great luck!” The farmer replied, “Maybe so, maybe not.”

Later that week, the farmer’s son was trying to break one of the horses and she threw him to the ground, breaking his leg. The neighbours cried, “Your son broke his leg, what terrible luck!” The farmer replied, “Maybe so, maybe not.”

A few weeks later, soldiers from the national army marched through town, recruiting all boys for the army. They did not take the farmer’s son, because he had a broken leg. The neighbours shouted, “Your boy is spared, what tremendous luck!” To which the farmer replied, “Maybe so, maybe not. We’ll see.”

It‘s impossible to tell whether anything that happens is good or bad.

You never know what the consequences of misfortune or good fortune will be, as only time will tell the whole story.

Things may look great at the start, but over time it may not become what you had imagined it to be. Similarly, you may feel bad about something but some day it could very well be one of the best things that ever happened to you.

“Trust that the universe is unfolding as it should.” – Max Ehrmann

Everything changes you see. The universe is ever changing. There is no room for judgement, for nothing is truly black and white.

This story helped me understand what it means to just “be”.

To be able to forget the sorrows of my past and not worry about the uncertainty of the future - to be able to truly live in the present, and start seeing life as not good or bad but just as is.

And so I wonder, did the story of a Chinese farmer do anything for you?

Maybe so, maybe not. You’ll see.

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