There was in a village an old very poor man, of whom even kings were jealous because he had a magnificent white horse.
They proposed him fabulous sums of money for this horse, but the man refused systematically :
- " This horse is not a horse for me ", he said, " it is a person, and how can you sell a person, a friend? "
He was poor, but he never sold his beautiful horse. One morning, he noticed that the horse was not anymore in his stable. All the villagers gathered and exclaimed :
- Poor madman of old man! We knew that one day this horse would be stolen. It would have been better selling it. What a misfortune!
The old man answered :
- Do not go so far. Say simply that the horse is not in the stable. This is a fact, all the rest is a judgment. I do not know if it is a misfortune or a blessing, because it is only a fragment. Who knows what is going to follow ?
People laughed at him. They had always thought that he was a little bit crazy. But fifteen days later, one night, the horse returned. He had not been stolen, he had simply escaped. He returned with him a dozen wild horses!
People assembled again :
- Old man, you were right, they said, it was not a misfortune. In reality, it has proved to be a blessing.
The old man answered :
- Again, you go too far. Say simply that the horse is back. Nobody knows if it is a blessing or not. It is only a fragment. You read a single word in a sentence - how can you judge the whole book ?
This time, they were not able to add much, but in themselves they knew that he was wrong. Twelve magnificent horses had arrived ! …
The old man had an only son who began to raise the wild horses. Just one week later, he fell off a horse and broke his legs. Again people met and, again, they judged :
- You were right again, it was a misfortune ! They said. Your only son lost the use of his legs, and he was the only support of your old age. Now, here you are poorer than never.
- You are obsessed by the judgment, answered the old man. Do not go so far. Say only that my son broke his legs. Nobody knows if it is a misfortune or a blessing. The life comes by fragments and you cannot know everything in advance.
A few weeks later, it happened that the country entered in war and all the young people of the city were requisitioned by strength by the army.
Only the son of the old man was not taken, because he was a disabled person. The whole city complained and cried : it was a war lost beforehand and all knew that most of the young people would never return. They went to the old man :
- You were right, they recognized, this accident has proved to be a blessing for you. It is possible that your son is a disabled person, but he is still with you. Our sons, them, left for ever.
The old man says again :
- You continue to judge ceaselessly. Nobody knows ! Restrict to say that your sons were forced to enter the army and that my son was not. Only God, The Powerful, knows if it is about a blessing or about a misfortune.
The moral of this story ?
Maybe only a holistic, macroscopic view allows to be apprehensive of the relations between the events. Then we are not able to judge de facto what is good or bad for us, because we cannot know the impact. Miss an interview and miss a job which because of the spare time allows you to go on a trip, an internship, a meeting which you would not maybe have been able to make …
To keep this point of view in mind allows to put in perspective during the events. The counterparty is that, during moment of enjoyment, we do not take advantage of it completely, having in mind that it is short-lived. The following step is very certainly to take advantage of the present moment and, to be able to have of the backward movement on difficult times.