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The Story Of The Butterfly




So in group yesterday we were handed a paper with "the story of the butterfly".


A man found a cocoon of a butterfly.

One day a small opening appeared.

He sat and watched the butterfly for several hours

as it struggled to squeeze its body through the tiny hole.

Then it stopped, as if it couldn't go further.

So the man decided to help the butterfly.

He took a pair of scissors and

snipped off the remaining bits of cocoon.

The butterfly emerged easily but

it had a swollen body and shriveled wings.

The man continued to watch it,

expecting that any minute the wings would enlarge

and expand enough to support the body,

Neither happened!

In fact the butterfly spent the rest of its life

crawling around.

It was never able to fly.

What the man in his kindness

and haste did not understand:

The restricting cocoon and the struggle

required by the butterfly to get through the opening

was a way of forcing the fluid from the body

into the wings so that it would be ready

for flight once that was achieved.

Sometimes struggles are exactly

what we need in our lives.

Going through life with no obstacles would cripple us.

We will not be as strong as we could have been

and we would never fly.

So have a nice day and struggle a little and teach well.


Anyhow, the ways that I have suffered have made me less selfish and more compassionate and empathetic. If I had grown up in an ideal home, never dealt with rejection, never experienced injuries or medical problems, always got my way, never experienced humiliation and frustration, or disappointment, or loneliness, I'd be a shallow boring person who could not relate to almost anybody, especially those who are suffering or handicap.


I'd probably be more judgmental and feel more entitled to all the good things in life. Would be more proud and arrogant and quite indifferent to the feelings of others.


If I had not experienced drug addiction, I'd look at those alcoholics and drug addicts like the scum of society, and they get what they deserve, because they're doing it to themselves. Same thing with those who indulge in self-mutilation and other destructive tendencies.


As a result of my shortcomings and defects, I've also been able to meet a lot of people who are mentally, emotionally, or physically ill, who have had very inspiring things to say, and occasionally was able to help them, which was the most rewarding experience in life so far.


When I meet someone who is annoying, stubborn, and rebellious punk, I'm able to not despise them and forgive them, because I have often acted just like them. So, these are examples of how our woundedness can be a source of healing to those around us. One can be forbearing with their own struggles and defects, making it more easy to be patient and empathetic when dealing with the flaws, mistakes, and misfortune of others.



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I think this is a very well written and poignant piece, Matt. Pain and suffering are good teachers, sometimes. The lessons, hard to forget. Glad you have learned a lot for your experiences. Good things await you. :)

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