The material world, as we see it, seems very unfair, unjust. It does not seem like it is the way it should be because there is so much variation, it’s so wide in difference. Why is it that some people are born very rich and some people are born very poor; some people are born very beautiful, some not so beautiful; some very intelligent, some not so intelligent; some very healthy and strong, others very weak, sick from birth; some are born in countries that are very powerful and peaceful, where life is quite easy; others are born in countries where there is war, there is famine, and existence is very difficult? Why it is that sometimes our life is going as we want it to, everything is good, and then, all of a sudden, it changes and everything is bad? We are so happy and the next moment we are so sad.
This theatre is a beautiful example how quickly things change, “Oh, I am so happy, I won the lottery! Now I am rich! I might give you a little money.” But it’s all about us, right? “I am rich.” And the other guy, “Oh, I’m so poor, I have to work. If I had money, I would do many things for you but I am so poor.” And the girl, “Oh, I’m in love. I have my lover, he makes me happy. And my husband…I am sick of him.” And then you saw how things changed. Now the poor husband, “Oh, I am rich” and the rich lover, “Oh, I have no money.” So much anger, so much frustration. And then the rich husband is robbed, “Oh, now I’m poor again.” So, it ends up that everybody loses: the lady loses her lover, they all lose the money. And you go, “Why? I don’t understand!”
Sometimes people say, “Why do bad things happen to good people?” I remember when I was in school, about 17-18 years old, there was one boy in my class who was so intelligent. He used to be a very clean person, always studious, studying. He was somewhat religious, he went to church on a regular basis. Everybody wanted their sons to be like him. Mothers would say, “Why can’t you be like him?” We were not, we were a little different. But then one day he got in a car accident and was killed. People couldn’t understand, “Why him?! He was so perfect in all ways. I don’t understand, why not somebody else?”
Again, when I was even younger, I lived in the part of America where there were a lot of black people. They always worked; that was their position. There was one big black man, 35 years old. He was so physically strong; he could do all kinds of heavy labor. He was very clean in his living habits, very honest. Everybody wanted him to work for them. And then there were the rest of the guys in black bodies. They drank and were unreliable: they said they would work but they didn’t; they were lazy, oftentimes dishonest. But one day there was a car of these men driving down the road, the car was full. And again there was a car accident. One person got killed; the rest of people hardly got injured at all. And who do you think was killed? The good guy. And everybody said, “Why not those guys, the worthless guys? He was the only good one.” It seems like everything is unfair—the bad guys get on top, not the good guys.
Some people die very young in life, other people live so long. Somebody very dear to you is healthy, then all of a sudden they discover they’ve got cancer, “Why me? Why him? I don’t understand.” And on and on it goes.
There was a young boy I knew in Los Angeles. He was a cool guy, 15 years old, very good looking. All the girls liked him; he had a lot of friends. One day he goes to the beach to enjoy swimming in the ocean, the sunshine and have a nice day at the beach. But Los Angeles is a place where there are many gangs and he got in a gang fight. He got stabbed in the back and immediately he was paralyzed from the waist down. A terrible event for him. All of a sudden, his life is now completely different. He is now going to be in a wheelchair for life. Of course, he suffered great physical pain, but he suffered huge mental pain as well. Life changes in a moment.
It can go the other way: you are poor and you win the lottery. Things are changing and it seems like we can’t figure it out, we can’t control it. It is confusing and we are perplexed. So the truth is that there is a very good explanation. We can understand these things. We can. It is possible to really understand what is going on.