“There is a time in every man's education when he arrives at the conviction that envy is ignorance; that imitation is suicide; that he must take himself for better, for worse, as his portion; that though the wide universe is full of good, no kernel of nourishing corn can come to him but through his toil bestowed on that plot of ground which is given to him to till. “ Ralph Emerson
There is something to be said about a man’s state of mind. It is either he spends the better part of his life wishing he were something else or doing something else other than the present. Or, he spends a great amount of time complaining how this or that does not work or is not suitable to his liking or whim. This, I have observed is what rules the nature of the present man. He is neither happy with his present state nor the state of the world.
Man is the only species whose weakness is apparent to him alone and whose world is then governed by those weaknesses. Plants and animals are prone to greater vagaries that expose and make bare their weaknesses. Yet never has a plant or animal stopped sprouting or its being, to complain of inherent short falls. The eagle soars as far as it can and so do ordinary flies, roses bloom and so do thistles. The day never stops.
Man cannot survive as if the world owes him a living. The universe, in its reality and existentialism has existed way before man and his thoughts ever existed. His birth is significant and unique, since he possesses ability no body or form possesses. Man can create in the same likeness and foam, nature and nurture like his maker.
Yet man is best useful and happiest, in another’s creation. He is told of a “New York state of mind”, and thus leaves his village in Kenya, sells his cow and soul to fund his trip. Upon, his arrival in New York, he toils, changing his accent and stride, acquiring those peculiar habits that will make him a New Yorker. In this quest, of embodying New York, the boisterous boy shouts in mantra, “New York State of mind”, (after all he lives there) as if to convince himself and not the crowd that he shouts at.
A state of mind is a spirit. It is not a location. Search New York itself and you will find the caricature is boxed and preserved in a fantastical Hollywood location site. And never evidenced in New York itself.New York, was someone’s creation. Before they sold it to those men fond of being followers.
What of those men keen on revolutions and ravel as surrogates of defunct ideas? Whom one finds happiest amongst fellow hordes in "occupy this" and "occupy that". 99% nonsense and 1% noise. I see many coming out, with t-shirts and such, with aplomb subscribing to the Obama frenzy. “I got your back”. What foolishness, utter laziness to abrogate one’s ambitions to a political demagogue. Obama is a man blessed with trickery to force other men to follow a fade. The more that follow, the more popular he becomes. Never leave one’s fate to any politician of any hue.
Entrepreneurship and starting something that changes the world
Whatever it is let it be what has never been done before. Only then can you attest to have changed the world. Write a book if you must, break the Olympics record, record music, paint art, invent- innovate, in all remember fortune favours the brave. Be different. Let your story be one your grand children will find relevance. That is good enough.
A venture like any adventure is best explored with closed eyes and an open heart. Trust your guts and will power. Dream differently and relish the creative realm- therein the story of life is weaved.
Of youth and school days
What I learnt most in high school was less the core curriculum and more the extra- curricular. In extra activities-non core (the irony) I veered off science and economics and entered the worlds of Dickens, Hardy and Austen. I debated with much acclaim and understood team spirit on the grounds of sport. Here, the lesson is quite clear for any young man out there. The best of humanity is found on the sports field and in liberal subjects outside of the classroom. One learns to lead through experience as a track captain, learns of human attachment by being part of a team, and meritocracy through competition.
Sadly these virtues are lost to the stupidity of youth. Saddest, is that the less stupid find great accomplishment in the classroom to the detriment of the extra curricula? The classroom teaches one to parrot and become a follower. Most people are of this fold. True leaders, those of a breed of born qualities such as intuition, courage and will power find practise in some sport, art or cultural pursuit.
On Marriage and life long associations.
In all of society the propensity to get married is equal if not more than the propensity of a bird to fly. It is an innate human quality, a selfish desire for affection. No matter how primal or sophisticated the human becomes, instinctive desires lead us to mate. This ability to create is a laudable endeavour and gives one a sense of purpose beyond the self.
What I find disconcerting is the desire to mate as the single most important human desire to live for. How pathetic is the human race in its desire to copulate and wish all troubles away. The hurdle is twenty six living ages for women and thirty five for men. After which, hormonally the human species cannot habitat alone and the desire becomes greatest to be hitched. This has obvious dangers, which any mind can decipher.
My comments shall be restricted to finding the right mate. Circumstances permitting, an individual shall come across as many hopefuls as the stars in the sky. A difficult endeavour to compute the “right” mate, since any metric used is likely to change with time. Moreso, a star in the sky only shines brightest depending on where one stands. The wisest words I have heard where in a parable about Wheat and Tares. Let them grow together, since it is difficult to differentiate when they sprout and are growing. But at harvest time, Wheat and Tares become obvious. Live life and be patient until harvest time. Before then, everything is murky and ill conceived. Imagine harvesting a maize cob before its time.
Upon finding the right mate. Never regret one’s choice, since regret is self fulfilling. The more one regrets, the more disappointing the choice.
Should I conclude?
The danger is apparent. One cannot live a life as if they owe it to anyone. Not even their parents. Man owes it to himself to live. To his spirit to determine his course and state. Only then will the universe listen. Man is made to lead. Uncover this great secret and watch how other men of weak disposition will imitate.