When downfall is near, first thing one looses is patience. Patience requires acceptance. There’s too much haste in resistance. People often confuses patience with will power. I used to count seconds during listening to University lectures. When it’s done I used to feel relieved. I had a choice to walk out of the classroom in any moment during those lectures but that would have brought consequences that no student want to face. This is an example of will power. It is an ability to endure resistance but patience is not torturing yourself for something you do not want to do. If you won’t do, world still will be just fine. May be your mind could make fuss about it. Human nature is very much compulsive. It seeks constant need of completion. Most people feel happiness only when the work is done. Very few enjoys the process. In an Indian mythology, there is a story of Shabri and Lord Rama.
Shabri was full of devotion. One day when sage Matang was very old, he called his disciple Shabri and said,”My daughter I am leaving this body, is there anything you want me to do for you?”
Shabri prayed,”Lord take me with you to the highest abode you are going. I can not live without you.”
Sage Matang said,”Dear one day Lord Rama will come to see you until then stay alive after that you come to me.”
Shabri stayed alive in anticipation of Lord Rama. She would get up early morning every day and go to the forest to collect the berries to serve Lord Rama. She didn’t know when Rama would come. She would go to the forest and collect berries everyday. In that manner she spent many years. In those years she never been hesitated for a moment or doubted guru’s word. Everyday with same enthusiasm she would do her ritual and as story goes one day Lord Rama came to see her and bless her.
In nutshell, Patience is enjoying the process, not knowing when the purpose will be served. As I said earlier, Patience requires acceptance. It takes whole lot of strength to accept than to resist. It is difficult for compulsive mind to accept never ending process without loosing stability of mind. In pain, life seems like never ending process. Being patient with life is difficult in such times because too much resistance can cause too much suffering. After accepting life as it is, pain will be there but it won’t cause suffering anymore. Patience liberates you.