Or rather the characteristic side of life.
Take a rose which is a flower with infinite beauty, grace and perfume. Just close your eyes and remember the delicate scent of a rose. Yes, isn't it divine?. But have you ever picked one up? Oh yes, painful pricks galore.
The rose is a perfect symbolism for life. We often admire life from a safe distance and seem to circle, hover or prance egotistically around the edges of it. If it looks and smells good, we take it but if it happens to come with a side order of thorns, quite a few of us tend to drop the vision and look for a different life or rather lifestyle.
The secret to a good and satisfying life is to get our hands dirty and to take the thorns that it might have in our stride. Everyone has problems of a sort. You know, the size of the problem is irrelevant because it is each individual's perception of it that matters.
How many of us have lost ( knowingly & unknowingly ) a thing of value, beauty and grace because we didn't feel like tackling the thorns? Be it a spouse, house or job...
It is said that life isn't a bed of roses, but I think it is as long as we understand that owning a good life does involve the odd challenge along the way. Gosh, challenges make everything more interesting and worthwhile. Nobody wants blandness after all.
Talking and engaging in a deep conversation with some of our village elders is eyeopening, humbling and rather therapeutic. They have had a thorny life with only a side order of beauty attached to it. War, scarcity, poverty and jolly hard work but despite all that, most of them tell me:
" You know, we had a hard life, we didn't have much and we worked all the time. But looking back, those were the happiest times of my life."