Dear Darkness, You Light Up My Life

I tweeted this a few weeks ago and got a few favorites and retweets.

As someone whose been through his fair share of chaos, I can honestly say that I am grateful for all the dark puzzle pieces in my life.

I’ve learned that darkness brings out the light. Those of you who are artists, photographers, or filmmakers know that nothing highLIGHTS more than contrast. If we look at the dark parts of a piece of art, we quickly realize that these dark spots allow us to see the Light.

Surfing as Sadhana

One of my favorite kinds of light is God Light. God Light only happens when there are dark clouds or a dark background that make the light visible.

“The wound is the place where the Light enters you.”~Rumi

Something else I learned during the darkest points of my life is that only in darkness do we seek or appreciate the light. When we are cruising along basking in the sun, we often take it for granted, especially in California. Sometimes darkness can change the direction of our lives.

For example, I just came out of one of the heaviest periods of my life. My darkness was so bleak that no one wanted anything to do with me for fear of it spreading to them. BUT out of this pitch blackness, I found BLOGGING, and what a Light it has been in my life. I found you! And I wouldn’t change a thing.

I’ve had blogs before. One of my colleagues was a huge blogger before he passed away 8 years ago. He would constantly tell me about how amazing the blogging community was (and this was 8 years ago). He urged me to start blogging, but I was too busy watching Netflix.

Huge traumatic events almost forced me into blogging. I now look back and see that this was part of a bigger picture.

Through blogging I have found my purpose in life–to bring peace. I’m not saying I’m going to stop war in my lifetime, but I am going to work my skinny little butt off trying to create peace with my wife, children, friends, acquaintances, strangers, and enemies. I feel more at peace in my life than at any point I can remember.

I say this not to brag, but because I know that some of you are facing darkness in your life. I hope my story gives you some perspective. I’m almost at the point where I welcome darkness because I know that it signals a new Light in my life.

Having said that, I also want you to know that I am always here to give virtual {{{hugs}}}. Nothing soothes the darkest night like having someone to hug.

May you be free from suffering. May you know peace and joy. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

Thank you for reading, sharing, and/or empathizing.

Has darkness brought you Light? Please share.


71 comments on “Dear Darkness, You Light Up My Life

  1. Stuck Sucks says:

    Reblogged this on Being Stuck Sucks and commented:
    This is so true. While I still tend to run my pants off away from darkness, it is where most of my growth starts…

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      Thanks for the Reblog, BSS. I agree that we tend to fear or loathe the darkness, but if we can see it as a signal of the Light to come, our lives become much easier. {{{hugs]}} Kozo

  2. Stuck Sucks says:

    I just re-blogged this (and cried – I seem to be crying every other minute these days). It is so true, though as I said in my re-blog, while I still try to run my pants off away from the darkness, it is where my growth starts. Thank you. I love that you give {{{Hugs}}}

  3. rarasaur says:

    I love that Rumi quote. A quote by Rumi was painted on my wedding dress, actually. 🙂 Thanks for the reminder, Kozo. 😀

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      One of my favorite quotes of all time, Rara. Are you going to tell me what Rumi quote was “painted” on your wedding dress? Was it painted on the outside? You are so special. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

      • rarasaur says:

        🙂 Yes, it was handpainted in white, on the outside white satin– so really only visible from angles and or under brighter lights. It said: “my soul heard something from your soul. I drank water from your spring, and felt the current take me.” It’s taken from a poem:

        The form of our love is not a created form.
        Nothing can help me but that beauty.
        There was a dawn I remember when my soul
        heard something from your soul.
        I drank water from your spring,
        and felt the current take me.

      • Kozo Hattori says:

        One day, I would love to see a photo of this dress/quotation. Love the poem–never read it before. I am so grateful to share the creative explosion that is your life, Rara. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  4. lauriesnotes says:

    I feel the same way…all of it!
    I am honored to be a psrt of bloggers for peace.
    Snd when I see your gravatar on my site it always makes me smile 🙂

  5. Has darkness brought me light? You know it has, Kozo. 😀 We’re grateful for you too.

  6. Alison says:

    Darkness has *propelled* me to the light! Adyashanti (did you go hear him talk yet?) said he learned the hard way that you shouldn’t take away another’s pain because it may be exactly what they need to propel them into awakening. I know Eckhart Tolle was at his lowest point when he became en-light-ened. I think we live in the duality of light and dark until we get it that they’re all the same thing – nothing.

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      You are a teacher, and I am grateful for your lessons. Yes, we need to realize that light and dark are the same thing–no thing. Free from judgment they are just clouds in the sky.
      I love the Adyashanti advice. Now that I think about it, cultivating compassion would not be possible without pain–ours or others. It is like the Dalai Lama being grateful for the Chinese because they forced him to reach a deeper level of compassion.
      Adyashanti’s name has popped up twice in the last 24 hours. Definitely a sign. I will see him on August 18th in Palo Alto.
      {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  7. KM Huber says:

    Yes, Kozo, darkness always seems to bring light, albeit at times, the darkness seems interminable. As your delightful post states, the joy that comes out of the darkness is brilliant, completely diminishing the low vibration as well. Thanks for another fine post, my friend.

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      Like Jeff Foster says, we need to be willing to embrace our thoughts/emotions under the condition that they may never go away, KM. You know better than I do how important acceptance is in this mess we call life. I feel like we are playing tennis with our posts. The ball is in your court. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  8. csroth3 says:

    This is very true and you’ve expressed it well. I’ve often read about bloggers being grateful for the pain they have experienced. I’ve had some difficulty getting to that point and staying there, I’m still working at it. Blogging has been very therapeutic.

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      Yes, blogging is therapeutic. That is something that I was completely ignorant of when I started blogging, CS. I started blogging to build an author platform. 8 1/2 months later, I have no book for sale, but I have found peace, joy, and friendship through blogging. What a pleasant surprise. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  9. Kelly Kuhn says:

    You need to find a plugin that displays a “Love” button!

  10. Tatiana says:

    Reblogged this on poeticparadoxoflife and commented:

  11. Tatiana says:

    Reblogged this on poeticparadoxoflife and commented:
    Life is like a jigsaw puzzle. The individual pieces seem incoherent, trivial, and chaotic. Step back, and we see beauty, unity, and meaning.
    — Kozo (@everydaygurus)

  12. Geo Sans says:

    darkest moments


    highlight our resiliency


    artists realize

    there’s always detail

    in shadow


    when we truly learn

    to trust

    to see

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      I love how much wisdom you put in so few words, Geo Sans. Yes, trust is necessary to see clearly. I also love the highlight of resiliency. Maybe we are like rubber, we need to be stretched routinely or else we get brittle and break. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  13. tobyo says:

    most excellent!! I just emerged from a long, dark period in my life too. and one thought I had was that we may not even be aware of all the reasons we had to go through that darkness. For me, I think I may be learning those reasons as I continue along. thanks for another excellent, enlightening post! peace to you.

    • tobyo says:

      oh, let me share one. It took over a year to get out of a miserable job. That year plus was the dark period. When I got to my new job I found someone who was going through a very similar thing that I just went through. When she confided in me I couldn’t help but think that was one reason my job search took so long. It had to be such that I would console her in her last 6 weeks of her job (she looked for only 4 weeks! ah….but good for her, she’s much happier now) so that she would know she wasn’t alone, she wasn’t crazy nor incompetent, etc. It was truly uncanny listening to her those weeks I listened and consoled her.

      • Kozo Hattori says:

        Yes, Toby, we never know how our piece of the puzzle will fit with others. Sometimes we are meant to serve and sometimes we are meant to receive. Actually, sometimes we are meant to receive by serving. You just put my darkness in a whole new Light. In my darkest moments, I realize that I was a Light for those who were traveling with me. I can now be a Light for anyone who thinks they are not good enough, not worthy, or broken. I think that is why Jesus, the Phoenix, and Anakin Skywalker are so appealing to us. They all rose out of the mire to shine a Light/set an example for others. No matter how broken we are (and Jesus was broken on the cross which is why he cried, “My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?”), we can be redeemed, reborn, re-lit. It is human nature to mess up, but it is also within our nature to bounce back. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

      • tobyo says:

        I loved reading your comment, just wanted you to know. hugs back at ya!! thanks for being there.

  14. Lead Our Lives says:

    Beautifully written, Kozo. Light and dark have been on my mind this week. The two exist always. We may emerge from it and find ourselves walking through it again. So is the cycle of this wonderful life. I too, have found a home in this wonderful blogging community. So glad to be aware of yours. 😉

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      Wow, Carrie, your last post about the bottom of the ocean coordinates with this post perfectly. I love the choice–to drown or to gather pearls and swim to the surface. Life is so intelligent. You know as well as I do that these thoughts were not coincidental. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  15. What a beautiful perspective on light and darkness !!! Thank you!!

  16. merbear74 says:

    Your the man Kozo. {{HUGS}} MB

  17. ladyhawk87 says:

    S started blogging when i broke up with my ex boyfriend. So i can understand..Its a mood lifter for sure 🙂 and there are SO many wonderful people here.

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      It would be interesting to get statistics on how many of us came to blogging because of a dark period in our lives, Ladyhawk. I believe that there is no therapy better than blogging. {{{hugs]} Kozo

  18. utesmile says:

    You give us so much light and peace. We thank you for it hundred fold. Funny enough I started blogging after a darker period too and it gives me so much light , peace and enjoyment.
    And I do love your hugs, Kozo, thank you! {{{hugs}}}

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      I can’t imagine you having a dark period, Ute. You shine so much positive light from your blog. Just goes to prove that darkness does bring out the Light. {{{Hugs}}} to you and your son. Love Kozo

  19. I can relate so much with this post Kozo on a lot of levels. Blogging and the friends I have made within the blogging community have helped me and are helping me on a daily basis.

    I am still working on finding the beauty with the dark periods of my life and on the logical side I know you are right…I am just struggling to make sense of it sometimes. Thank you from the bottom of my for you virtual hugs, Kozo, they help me so much 🙂

    Enjoy your week-end and your family, dear friend

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      I’m with you there, Anyes. My blog friends help me on a daily basis as well. I’m still working on finding beauty in darkness, but I know that the bigger picture is beautiful beyond description. {{{hugs}}} to you and your family this weekend, Anyes.

  20. diannegray says:

    What a beautiful post, Kozo. As I’m reading this the sun is rising in the East over the mountains (and now blinding me!) I think it’s a sign 😉 {{{hugs}}}

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      “Blinded by the Light, revved up like a deuce, another roller in the night” Remember that song, Dianne. Glad you are enjoying a sunrise in the RUC. Lots of peace there. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  21. fgassette says:

    Adversity brings about strength of character, maturity and wisdom. Without it we are weak and untested. Your post shows the wisdom you have found in your dark times. Well written source of encouragement.


    • Kozo Hattori says:

      “without it we are weak and untested.” So true, Francine. The trick is that we are not aware of our weakness or naivete until we get struck by adversity. I guess this is what they call hubris. Thank you for your wisdom and blessings. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  22. 1EarthUnited says:

    Great observations Kozo, u’r really getting good at observing your own awareness. Self awareness, then pure awareness is the hallmark of a sentient being. So happy u’r spreading your light, joy, and love with the rest of us. The world would not be as divine without you dear Kozo! ♥
    Much love and respect my generous friend! {{{hug some more}}} mmmm mm good 🙂

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      mmmm mm good.

      Why is it that every time you comment, Maddy, I feel the need to repeat something you said? I feel like you have me under the Jedi mind-trick.
      I often feel like I am just a vessel of a higher power, but I never thought the higher power was you, my friend. haha.
      {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  23. Beautiful writing and I cherish you, my friend.

  24. […] Dear Darkness, You Light Up My Life […]

  25. Sunshine says:

    i just tweeted:

    in darkness we often find the Divine One. why?

    in the light we only want to see our own reflection.

    self love is hard to give up.

    ☼sunHUGS Kozo!

  26. Rohan 7 Things says:

    Great post Kozo!

    Yes exactly, there are no highs without lows, no light without dark. It really does seem that it is through great hardship that breakthroughs are made. It was only through my nervous breakdown at the age of 19 that I sought out and discovered so much of what has made my life happy and healthy.

    Dark times contain within them the capacity to reach great brightness 🙂

    Thanks for sharing!


    • Kozo Hattori says:

      Wow, Rohan, 19 is awfully young to go through a break down and a rebuild, but you obviously emerged out of this darkness a butterfly in full flight. I still ponder who productive you are on a daily basis. Keep on Keepin on, my friend. {{{Hugs}}} Kozo

  27. Anonymous says:

    Kozo, I sense your light getting brighter every day! Don’t think you “need” the darkness anymore.
    Much Love, Sandy

  28. Sandy says:

    Kozo, I truly sense / feel that your light is getting brighter every day! I really don’t think that you “need” the darkness any more! Much Love, Sandy

  29. Through contrast we perceive the world around us- that ray of sun piercing the clouds, the little bit of good in the midst of chaos and suffering, a warm smile from a loved one after a crazy stressful day in the office…

    I have found the reading of blogs (such us yours) to be as cathartic as the outlet of writing. In the midst of all the philosophical and spiritual stuff I read here, and on other blogs, I find the practical, and I find things I can connect with and feel some comraderie/solidarity with the writer.

    It is the lows in my life- even the lowest ones- that have helped me to appreciate the highs- even the smallest of them.


    • Kozo Hattori says:

      “It is the lows in my life- even the lowest ones- that have helped me to appreciate the highs- even the smallest of them.”
      This sums up the entire post in much less words. Brilliant.
      Yes, reading blogs and feeling some solidarity is a huge comfort to me as well. Comments like yours make me realize that I’m not the only one experiencing these things. It means a lot to me to have friends like you. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  30. Lady Lovely says:

    I find that darkness always brings out the light in me. No matter how dark it gets, it always inspires something sensational. Great post here my friend.

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      It is almost as if the darkness forces us to light something inside of us, Lady Lovely. And I agree that the Light from within is sensational. Thanks for the love. {{{hugs]}} Kozo

      • Lady Lovely says:

        I agree-on my dark days, I write some of my most powerful and emotional work. In fact, my post today stemmed from a dark day. Like you said, out of the dark and into the light. It’s a magical feeling. ((hugs))

  31. Dieu says:

    I agree, Kozo. I think the dark moments of my life have made me a person who feels very deeply about people. Sometimes it makes me too vulnerable and even naive, but our vulnerabilities can be our strengths. {{{hugs!}}}

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      Yes, Dieu, vulnerability is our path to compassion and happiness. Have you seen the Brene Brown talks on Tedtalk and youtube? Great stuff on vulnerability. {{{hugs}}} Kozo

  32. NIKOtheOrb says:

    Great post, Kozo. And I just sent Rar one of your famous Virtual Hugs for the bracelet and note she mailed to me. Here’s one for you, too. {{{{Hugs}}}} 🙂 Be well, friend.

    • Kozo Hattori says:

      What??? I’ve been on a blogging break. I had no idea Rara was sending out jewelry. 😦
      Thanks for the {{{Hug}}}, Niko. So happy to share time with you in the blogosphere. {{{Hugs back}}} Kozo

      • NIKOtheOrb says:

        See what happens when you take a blogging break? You miss out on all the wonderful things. 🙂 I nearly missed it, too (as I too had spent some months out of the blogosphere), but made it by a day. I’m sure if you ask Rara [paging Rara, paging Rara] nicely, she will send you a belated bracelet, made by her own hands complete with handwritten and personalized note. Tell her I sent you. 🙂

        You’re welcome for the {{{hugs}}} and welcome back to the ‘sphere. Hopefully, your time away was well enjoyed.

        Here’s to good times, my friend.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s