The stories that have stuck with us through the centuries are often the ones that still speak to us, despite the shift in time and culture.
In a very old Scandinavian story, Mimir’s Well, shaded by the world tree Yggdrasil, contained the waters of wisdom. Odin, god of creativity and war, wanted a single drink from this well. Mimir would not grant him a sip until he paid the cost. In exchange for one of his eyes, he was granted a single drink from the well and gained knowledge of everything around him, including the future.
When we become experts on a subject, it is because we have lived it, experienced it and spent countless hours studying it. When we achieve happiness, it is usually because we have struggled and found the wisdom, peace and self-love that must come beforehand. When we attain wisdom, it is often through some trial after which our knowledge is refined and perfected. Sometimes, it is from sacrifice that we attain wisdom of a thing.
We learn over the years to find the fierce independence in ourselves, to find the depths of love that we are capable of and to realize our power to write our own futures.
Few times does self-actualization and personal discovery come without some kind of cost, whether it is the time spent on the journey of discovery or the event that placed us on that path. But it is comforting to think that our trials are not in vain. Each thing that happens to us only changes our reaction, not our power to decide our future.
Life slowly grants us the wisdom and serenity to make the most of every occasion. Attaining that knowledge is not always easy. But we can then face life with mastery and grace, and are equipped with the strength to triumph in any situation.