We can experience much joy in life, but we can experience sorrow also. The poet Kahlil Gibran wrote of this in The Prophet when he said, “The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.” Later he adds, “They are inseparable… when one sits alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.”
Some may think this is a bit of a downer, but it is truly a rich insight. Sorrow and joy are both inevitable parts of life. The wise remember this.
Joy can be nourished in one’s inner life, giving one strength even in times of adversity. This is what makes it qualitatively different from pleasure, which is derived mainly from outer aspects of life. Pleasure tends to be evanescent, while joy, coming from a deeper source, has more staying power, even when times are tough. Nourish Joy. It is a valuable companion!