There was an old man who lived in the border area of the country. He raised a horse. One day, the horse ran away and was not to be found anywhere. His friend came to express his sympathy. He said, “You never know. Losing that horse may actually be a blessing in disguise!”
A few months later, the horse came back and brought another one with it. His friend came to congratulate him. He calmly replied, “Getting another horse may actually be a misfortune!”
Now that they had horses, his son rode them every day. Unfortunately, he fell, broke his leg and became lame. The old man coolly told his friend, “His being lame may actually be a good thing!”
Not too long after, there was a rebellion in the area. The king proclaimed an edict that men of the area must go to war. Nine out of ten would perish. The old man’s son, being lame, never had to enlist and therefore remained alive.
* * * * *
Fortune and misfortune swing back and forth in an unpredictable fashion.
In fortune there is misfortune. In misfortune, there is fortune.
Therefore, do not over-react prematurely. When encountering bad luck, you should cultivate and rectify yourself so that the misfortune passes quickly. When in luck, you should not be arrogant and not be lax, then the fortune will last longer.
In all, if we cultivate the Dharma, bad luck can become good luck and good luck can last longer or increase.