I finally got around to Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game (and so far, 4 other books in the series). This quote is as much life philosophy as it is science fiction (emphasis added),
There is no teacher but the enemy. No one but the enemy will tell you what the enemy is going to do. No one but the enemy will ever teach you how to destroy and conquer. Only the enemy tells you where he is strong. And the rules of the game are what you can do to him and what you can stop him from doing to you.
The enemy can be the resistance. The enemy can be the dip. The enemy can be the obstacle.
We learn from what’s blocking us. We learn from the challenges at the point most sane people would have given up. We learn from a blockage that it holds the answer for the path through.
Ps. these books are full of philosophy. If you’re interested in psychology, morality, and ethics – “in space” – they’re highly thought-provoking and entertaining. If you want the Hollywood page-turner, just do Ender’s Game. If you want the Socratic dialogue on everything else (which does get a bit tedious at times, but my personal ratio of “hmm, interesting” to “oh come on” was 85/15), keep going through the quintet.
Pss. if you like seeing how religions reduce as you expand to worlds beyond earthlings, Card is really interesting for how he thinks through this (without disparaging any religion, but instead exploring where the underlying truths and connections are).