“If you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain” – Dolly Parton.
“With the abolition of private property, then, we shall have true, beautiful, healthy Individualism. Nobody will waste his life in accumulating things, and the symbols for things. One will live. To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.” -Oscar Wilde
These are two profound quotes attributed to the Country Singer and the Famous Playwright. Can you really expect only good things and never bad things? Don’t we have to take the bad with the good? Also, isn’t it part of “Non-Equanimity” to be obsessed with accumulating things and symbols? If your existence is solely for the purposes of making more money and gaining power, then are you really living?
Equanimity also balances Loving-Kindness (metta) with patience. If you lack equanimity, you demand to the Universe and God that He will make you happy on your terms. If there is someone close to you that hurts you, if you have equanimity you can still love them. Equanimity is so pivotal to a peaceful existence. Once we have put forth all our efforts, and there is nothing further we can possibly fix, we need Equanimity to be able to endure and experience what happens next.
There are those who define equanimity the wrong way by thinking it signifies sang froid, cold bloodiedness, or withdrawal. It does not mean you “don’t care”. In fact you do care, but you accept the world as IT IS, even if it is not the way you want it to be. After achieving equanimity, you recognize that pain and suffering is just as much a part of this world as pleasure and exciting moments. You just take it all in, and react with an even keel, and your peaceful mind is as strong as a rock:
“If your mind becomes firm like a rock
and no longer shakes
In a world where everything is shaking
Your mind will be your greatest friend
and suffering will not come your way.” — Buddhist poem from the Therigatha