Life has its sorrows and its griefs, as it has its joys and pleasures. The moment one tentacle of an octopus is cut off, it grows another. Even so trials and tribulations of one kind or another wear out human hearts. Adversity afflicts some, difficulties depress others and sickness and death distress all. The meek and the reticent suffer silently. They groan and moan and suppress their sighs and sorrows and breathe them not into any human ear. They suffer in solitude.
Death is the grief beyond all griefs. The hearts of fond parents are lacerated by death’s severance. In the death of their only son, the last ray of light that brightened their lives, recedes. Tears bring but little relief, when the heart is wounded to the death. Bowed down by bereavement, they are lost in gloom brooding. The melancholy mood oppresses them. The hero who has bravely bearded grim death on a hundred battlefields, finds that his dear ones have departed this life at short intervals, leaving him alone to mourn their untimely death. He has none but his own self for company. He feels his isolation bitterly. A sharp shiver runs through his body and makes the blood freeze in his veins. Sorrow lies heavily upon his heart. And now that he is down, his adversaries trample on him.
An unforeseen calamity casts a blight upon another. Agony overwhelms his soul. The tears rise in his throat and break out in a burst of convulsive sobbing. He weeps a torrent of tears. He mourns the misfortune of his life. In dismal darkness is his night shrouded and there is no sign of the dawning morn that may bring light to cheer him. He cannot hold on to hope, for he has lost his grip on it. He becomes weary of his life.
The man in the seat of power finds himself betrayed by those whom he trusted with his honour. He falls disgraced. His friends and admirers desert him. The snobs and toadies and flunkies who flattered him flee from him. The recollection of his lost grandeur, when he was at the zenith of his fame, touches him to the quick. His hair turns grey overnight. The lines of his face deepen. His face becomes haggard. He loses vigour. He grows old in spirit. His heart is deeply grieved. He prays that the earth beneath his feet may open her mouth and swallow him.
What another thought honey in his life proved to be but gall. Financial crisis ruins him. It shatters his nerves and depresses his mind and breaks his heart. The darkness of despondency settles upon his heart. The sad memory of his wealth he had amassed tortures him. Bowed down in spirit, he lives in black despair. His fondest hope fades. His ambition is balked. No twilight of hope is there to drive away the darkness of despair. Worn out, he sinks to rest. For long hours he lies awake brooding tortured with memories of his lost riches. The doleful sound of the hooting of an owl terrifies him. Sinister dreams frighten him, when he sleeps. His day is done, he thinks. Death, he believes, would be mercy to him. Sick of life, he prays for merciful death, but death does not come to him.
Thou, Ahura Mazda, art the eternal refuge of the weak and the weary and the wronged. Thou alone dost take them with tender care to Thy bosom and wipe away their tears. Thou art their incomparable comfort in their sorrow. Dark and empty is the world to them without Thee. Thy sublime peace possesses their souls, when they put themselves in Thy hands and become Thy care.
When the hardships of life threaten to overbear and overpower me, give me courage, my Lord, to play the man. Let me not groan under my miseries. Let me not hopelessly and helplessly fall in the slough of despond. Embolden me to fight my misfortune. Let not mental worry and weariness of life conquer me. If nothing avails, help me to forget my sad plight by abstracting myself completely from my present painful condition, and live awhile in the new world of ideas in company of sages and seers, that the light of the morn may break in upon the darkness and gloom of my heart and lighten my grief.
I put my trust in Thee, for Thou art the stay and support of all, O Most Trustworthy Lord. When misfortune overwhelms me, Thou art my safest and surest refuge and hiding place. I resign myself unto Thee. I come to Thee for I have nowhere else to go. Thou and Thou alone art my refuge where I can flee in times of my trouble. In Thee only can I find my abiding peace and rest. I am safe, when I repose upon Thee. I am secure, when I rest in Thee. Thou art my unfailing refuge in weal or woe, Ahura Mazda!