A spamming incident involving Canadian Viagra just threw a wrench into my peaceful online existence. Every person I have ever emailed received a link with my name, which led them to a spunky Viagra webpage. You’d think the cyberpirate won, here. But checking today’s news, I see a Russian called the Spam-Javelin Spammer has been charged in absentia for amassing a small fortune in unlicensed prescription sales.
His business raked in a cool $120 million dollars before the Russian feds nabbed him.
I raked in 37 distraught emails about the nasty link. My apologies to everyone infected. My passwords are changed, by which I hope to have thwarted all evil.
Because of this so-called evil, one welcome email arrived, from a long-lost friend who’s recently had a baby and won a fellowship in Vienna. He’s finishing his dissertation which I helped edit, long since. Patryk wouldn’t have emailed without the Viagra push. And I wouldn’t have relished his great news. My twenty-something roommate, hearing this, said, “Blessing in disguise…” then she shrugged. “They all are.”
And here’s where I make my point. Or let Oscar Wilde make it for me: "What seems to us as bitter trials are often blessings in disguise." I don’t mean to make a tiny spamming incident carry great philosophical weight, but when I read this quote by Seneca, the whole blog surrendered to profundity:
The great blessings of mankind are within us and within our reach; but we shut our eyes, and, like people in the dark, we fall foul upon the very thing we search for, without finding it.
This takes me straight to “the kingdom of god is within you,” perhaps the only Biblical quote I cherish. And surely everyone misses this wide-open truth on a regular basis.
Bitter trials can serve as wedges to open our eyes, light the light, at least if we allow them to. I’ll be contemplating Seneca’s metaphor a long while, wondering how I shut my eyes and fall foul of exactly what I seek—all because some greedy computer wiz hacked into my email.
Do you want easy or do you want insight? Reality rarely gives the former and continually allows for the latter. Still I confess I'm glad the Russian hacker has cranky federal agents on his tail!
More on Seneca
Bio of Oscar Wilde