“When joy disappears, look for your mistake.” Leo Tolstoy
Tolstoy, most famous for writing War and Peace, has been described by many as one of the greatest writers of all time. His doctrine of nonresistance to evil had an important influence on Gandhi. He was dedicated to studying the human consciousness and searching for the meaning of life.
I believe this Tolstoy quote is genius in it’s simplicity. “Mistake” is such an offensive word but, before we recoil, let’s be open tothe possibility that Tolstoy chose the perfect word. He makes it a game of hide-and-seek but he tells us where to look so we can get our joy back. The beauty of it being our mistake is that we can fix our mistakes—we can’t necessarily fix someone else’s.
Has joy disappeared in any area of your life? Have you been looking for your mistake or have you been pointing your finger elsewhere? If “mistake” is rubbing you the wrong way, then change the quote to, “When joy disappears, I know I can find a way to fix this.” The power to fix it has always been with us. I believe Tolstoy was looking to empower us not blame us. Hide-and-seek is so much easier when you know where to look! Joy, here we come!