One Good Laugh Can Break up a Thousand Sorrows

Guan Ming

PureInsight | April 30, 2007

[] A wise man
once told me," The secret to longevity is to laugh often."
Unfortunately I was too young to understand the deeper meanings of that
remark. After I grew up, I gradually learned that everyone has worries,
disappointments, and even painful experiences. It is not easy to bring
a smile to one's face every day. Life has its ups and downs. 
However, if we can maintain an optimistic outlook, keep our confidence
and smile during the most stressful moments, we can then enrich the
most ordinary days, live a joyful life, and turn a miserable moment
into something sweet and memorable.  


Renowned Jewish psychiatrist Dr.Viktor Emil Frankl suffered a great
deal in a concentration camp, where death and blood were everywhere.
Many women, children, and elderly people died every day. One could not
find a speck of humanity and respect there from the prison personnel.
So Dr. Frankl lived under conditions that would inspire extreme
fear  day after day and endured tremendous physical and mental
hardships. One day, he followed a long line of detainees to do physical
labor outside the camp and kept thinking he might not return alive that

When half of the work was done his shoe-laces broke. He thought it was
a bad omen. His mind was filled with confusing thoughts and he started
feeling very tired of life. To calm himself, he started to fantasize
that he was full of energy and giving a lecture in a large brightly lit
classroom.  After he closed his eyes, he felt quite comfortable,
and a smile came on his face.  That smile was something he had
missed for a long time! At that instant he told himself excitedly,
"It's wonderful! As long as I can see a smile, I will not die in this
concentration camp and I will walk out of here alive." He did indeed
walk out the concentration camp.  All his friends were astonished
to see him because his whole being radiated the spirit of youth, and
his face bore no traces of suffering.


The ability to lift your spirits to a smile, even to laugh, is a
treasure that heaven bestows on mankind.  If you can do this, your
internal environment will not get worse. When you can laugh during a
crisis, then it is amazing wisdom. In the Romance of the Three Kingdoms,
it was written that when Cao Cao lost the battle at Chibi, eighty-three
thousand of his soldiers were on the verge of being totally wiped out
by Zhou Yu.  Later, Cao Cao was almost killed by a king from
another state. But at those moments he could still laugh out loud.


We like people with a smile on their faces, because a smiling face is
warm and approachable. People who laugh often are quicker to make
friends, because a smile has its charm.  Scientific researches
also provide evidence that broad-minded, generous, and carefree people
by and large live healthier and longer lives.

Someone said, "A drink can break up a thousand sorrows."  I think
that it really does not liberate one from deep inside.  I would
like to say to a drinker, "If we can break up a thousand sorrows with a
laugh, what do we need a drink for?" Have a hearty laugh toward the
sky! Laugh out your fear of the secular world, your look to fame and
fortune, your liberation from life, and your spiritual ascension. Doing
that is indeed the charm of laughter.

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