“an enemy is really your guru, your teacher.”

Ella Wheeler Wilcox sings in her 1908 collection of poems titled “Poems of Cheer”:

“Thank Fate for foes! I
hold mine dear
As valued friends.”

In “How to Expand Love: Widening the Circle of Loving Relationships” (translated by Jeffrey Hopkins), the Dalai Lama tells us of how our lives are benefitted by the “unintended kindness of others.” The sage teaches us that “an enemy is really your guru, your teacher.”


The enemy helps us cultivate “patience….forbearance….true love and compassion.” The enemy creates circumstances that encourage us to cultivate “courage” and other qualities that enable us to face life “without….breakdown.”

In Eiji Yoshikawa’s “Musashi: Way of Life and Death” (translated by Charles Terry), the novel about the legendary swordsman-philosopher, Miyamoto Musashi, we read the swordsman muse, after an attempt on his life: “Enemies were teachers in disguise.”

Peace 😊

“We do not see things as they are….”

An essay published on 9th July 2019 in the online “Psychology Today” titled “Why we see what we want to see”, tells us that

“the world as we conceive it in our awareness is not exactly an accurate representation of what it truly is. Our perception is often biased, selective, and malleable.”

“As research is demonstrating,” the cultural psychologist Marianna Pogosyan writes in the essay, “Our desires and goals” “taint not only our cognition, emotions, and behavior, but also—quite literally—how we see the world.”

In the 1961 “Seduction of the Minotaur”, loosely (perhaps) drawn from a part of her life, we read Anais Nin: “Lillian was reminded of the talmudic words: “We do not see things as they are, we see them as we are.”

In “The Open Road”, an enchanting book about the Dalai Lama, Pico Iyer ends a chapter with these words: “A pickpocket encounters a saint, the Tibetans say, and all he sees are the other man’s pockets.”

Peace 😊