What do you need to live your life well & truly? It is courage.
I like Tennyson's language, "Come now, friends, 'tis not too late to seek a newer world...for my purpose holds/ To sail beyond the sunset/ and the baths/ Of all the western stars, until I die."
It is courage that enables you to sail on when your heart loses hope. Courage enables Love, faith & hope.
It is a lie that winning is the only thing that matters.
When a physician friend died his obituary reported that, “He lost his battle with cancer.” This odd (& frequent) observation suggests my friend was a loser.
Life is not a football game.
If you die of old age can we say you lost your battle with death? If so you & I will lose.
My friend was a caregiver. He did not “lose." His victory came from living love to life's end.
If I die of cancer I hope no one says I “lost” my battle. I will not even have lost my life because I know I have tried - to the point of straining my potential.
Ralph Ellison wrote that the greatest affirmation of humanity is our willingness “to persist in the face of certain defeat.”
To face defeat & never retreat sounds foolish. But, to rest & return to trying expresses life.
This does not always need to be a grim endeavor. Amid the high anxiety of the 1989 Superbowl quarterback Joe Montana faced fear & laughed. With a minute on the clock & his team ninety-two yards from victory Montana came into the huddle & said to his team, "Hey, John Candy is in the stands." His reference to the comedian relaxed his team & led to victory.
Our highest moral imperative is not to succeed but to always try. You have so much more courage than you think.
Try even if you are tired. Try especially if you fail. Try even if you are in pain from trying before. Nurture your strength. Help others.
You can only succeed if you try. You only fail when you give up – when you do nothing, when you ignore someone you could have helped, when you live never using your gifts because you were too fearful (or unmotivated) to try.
Persistence overcomes resistance. I would rather be a “has been” then a “never was.”
Minton Sparks & friends are putting on a conference this summer called "Eat, Paint, Write."(https://www.eatpaintwrite.com) Do all these things with artistic intent.
Help the poor. Try things you are not good at as well as those things where you know you can succeed. If you persist you will always prevail – even if you fail to reach your goal.
Trying offers its own reward - that at the end of your days you can say that you strived – that you lived love to the last syllable of your life.
In that way, you will, "sail beyond the sunset/ and the baths/ Of all the western stars," until you die.