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Difficulties

Even places that have been shrouded in darkness for billions of years can be illuminated. Even a stone from the bottom of a river can be used to produce fire. Our present sufferings, no matter how dark, have certainly not continued for billions of years—nor will they linger forever. The sun will definitely rise. In fact, its ascent has already begun.

If you failed yesterday, strive to win today. If you were defeated today, strive to win tomorrow.

It's important to have the courage to ask yourself what it is that you should be doing now, at this very moment.

Just as physical training can bring forth the unseen capacities of our bodies and intellectual training develops our minds, our hearts can be trained and strengthened. Through the process of overcoming grief, for example, it is possible for us to see beyond our own suffering to develop a more expansive and robust sense of self. This experience can inspire us to care for others who feel the same pain.

Just as the pure white lotus flower blooms unsoiled in muddy water, our lives, which are supremely noble, can continue to shine even amid life’s harshest realities.

Life is a constant battle against deadlock. As long as we are alive, as long as we continue challenging ourselves, we are bound to come up against difficult obstacles that need to be overcome. If life were all smooth sailing, if we never encountered setbacks, that in itself would be a sign of stagnation.

Life without hardships may seem more attractive, but it is a shallow, lackluster thing.

No one can better bask in summer’s balm than those who have endured winter’s bite. Similarly, it is those who have suffered through life’s darkest hours who are able to truly savor the bright dawn of happiness. The person who has transformed the worst of fate into the best of fortune is life’s champion.

People do not grow when their environment is too comfortable, when they are not challenged. It is in the midst of suffering and hardship that strength of character is formed.

Rather than becoming discouraged, know that encountering a wall is proof of the progress that you have made so far.

Reality is harsh. It can be cruel and ugly. Yet no matter how much we grieve over our environment and circumstances nothing will change. What is important is not to be defeated, to forge ahead bravely. If we do this, a path will open before us.

Rise to the challenges that life presents you. You can’t develop genuine character and ability by sidestepping adversity and struggle.

The world of Hell is a state in which life is itself painful; where anything you see makes you feel miserable. Such people need someone―anyone―to be at their side. They need someone who will be there for them, to listen and offer even just a few words of encouragement. That’s all it may take for the flame of life to burn brightly once again in the heart of someone who is suffering deeply. Just knowing that someone cares about them makes their heart expand.

There is a saying that the earth upon which we fall is the same ground which enables us to push ourselves up again. There’s another which maintains that barley grows better after it has been trampled on. It is up to us to decide to live a life free from self-doubt and despair in spite of our failures. Indeed, it is during our most humbling moments that we should show greatest poise and grace.

We are not defeated by adversity but by the loss of the will to strive. However devastated you may feel, so long as you have the will to fight on, you can surely triumph.

When facing adversity, we may think we’ve reached our limit, but actually the more trying the circumstances, the closer we are to making a breakthrough. The darker the night, the nearer the dawn. Victory in life is decided by that last concentrated burst of energy filled with the resolve to win.

Why doesn’t constant trampling defeat the dandelion? The key to its strength is its long and sturdy root, which extends deep into the earth. The same principle applies to people. The true victors in life are those who, enduring repeated challenges and setbacks, have sent the roots of their being to such a depth that nothing can shake them.

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