Sometimes I say things in the heat of the moment just to have something to say and, then later, when I read the words back, they make sense! It sometimes really does happen that way. It makes me wonder if there really is a God or something.
Some Goon was sticking his elbows out at me in comments he put to a recent blog entry and I went into my usual riff about how all you need is love and love is the answer and what the world needs now is love, sweet love, blah, blah, blah, blee, blee. blee. Then, for reasons unknown to us mere mortals, the Holy Spirit elected to inspire me to talk about the connection between love and suffering. That balanced the gooey, sticky sweet part and made the riff sound more balanced and real and right.
It’s all about love. It’s all about suffering. Both things are so.
Suffering leads to love. Love leads to suffering.
Hey! I didn’t make the rules. I just report on these unfortunate investing realities as I happen to discover them.
If you keep your heart open to love, you are going to suffer. Anyone who tells you different is not your true friend. Like Otis, I’m a love man. But Otis also wrote “Mr. Pitiful.” Otis knows the score and Otis tells the truth. You need to listen to more than one song if you hope to get anywhere in this world.
I noted in that blog entry that the boards are gradually opening up to the idea of permitting honest posting. My dream! So I should be happy, right?
Well, yeah. Except that this opening up process is the result of lots of people losing a large percentage of their life savings. Which means that financial freedom dreams are being crushed. I am in the business of helping people make their financial freedom dreams come true. So I think it would be fair to say that this little detail is a discouraging note in an otherwise happy song.
Sorry about that.
It’s the way life goes on down here in the Valley of Tears. You get to love through suffering. There is no other way.
When I gave the title “Passion Saving” to my first book, I looked up the word “passion” in the dictionary. One of the definitions was “long suffering.” I thought that was funny. I suppose that the reference is to the passion of Jesus. But then why do they call the crucifixion the “passion” anyway? What’s up with that?
All passion comes from suffering. Romeo and Juliet felt a deep passion because their love was denied. If Juliet’s father had said “that Romeo fellow seems like a nice enough boy, perhaps we can find a place for him in the family business,” she would not have felt things so strongly. Love denied grows. A passionate moment is a moment when something that has long been denied to you is given to you.
We’re suffering now because of the lies we told in the 1990s. I wish that everyone would stop with all the nonsense rationalizations and just say things as we all on a deep level know they are. All the blah-blah has its place. But the first thing that is needed is for us to acknowledge that it is our own lies that caused the problem. We need to grow up. We need to stop making up stories that pull our attention away from The Real Story.
The pain is God’s way of forcing us to do that. He doesn’t set things up this way because He wants to crush us. Bear markets are not God’s vengeance. They are God’s way of showing His love for us. He is saying that He expects better of us, that he knows that we are capable of better.
We are a better people than we pretended to be in the late 1990s. We all should be wishing for a bear market so that we can regain the good qualities that we abandoned during that most unfortunate time. We are capable of honesty. We are capable of compassion. We are capable of intelligence. We are capable of courage.
It is by suffering that we regain the good traits that we temporarily set aside. It is by suffering that we learn again how to love.
And you thought that losing the money you hoped to retire on was a bad thing!
Today’s Passion: The article entitled Learning From Your Mistakes — I Never Should Have Bought That Leo Sayer Album explores the suffering involved in trying to find common ground with a girl who likes disco.