Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A Proactive Life

A man with outward courage dares to die.
A man with inward courage dares to live.

Lao Tzu
Aw, life is too difficult. There's too much work, too much sorrow, too much pain, too much trouble, too many things go wrong. Come on! Why not just pack it up, cash yourself in and quit?

Every day you've got to get up and face things. There's always something. If there weren't there'd be nothing. And if whatever it is is important to you then it's important enough to live for.

It's true that sometimes we feel as if we are hanging onto life by our fingernails, about to plunge into oblivion. But the mere fact that we have felt that way before and survived means that we will survive it again. It takes courage to let go and plunge. But it takes more to hang on until help arrives.

Recently I had the opportunity to relax into a soft bed of assisted living. I decided not to because I wanted to continue to be in charge of my life and pursue the goals I still have. I don't say that a choice like that may not be the right one for some people and, in fact, a choice to live and not give up. But it wasn't for me.

It was said to me by one person that I lacked the courage to face my old age and my need to be taken care of. That remark made no sense to me. It seemed to me, and still does, that it took more courage to continue to live and be in charge of my own life. To capitulate into old age was not an option.

Since becoming a bold faced blogger I've met a number of older folks through the electrical net whose minds are sharp and who express a zest for living and doing things, not in a hurry to jam a life together before they croak, but because they continue to look forward to today and tomorrow. I think the best defense against giving up is the constant consciousness of life.

It is one of the easiest things in life to dwell on the wrongs. But think how many times you shook your fist at trouble and got the better of it. It's the flowers that grow in your garden that bring a smile to the universe, not the weeds. It's the song you sing, the letter you write to a friend, the thought that brings joy to your heart, the successful completion of a project, the tasty dinner, the sigh of recreation and rest that make up a life. These are some of the fruits of my 7 decades of living. Put the angry, hateful, biting, sarcasm of the world in a bag, seal it and throw it in the trash. Real life is not made of scorn.

Not giving in to the easy life was one of the smartest decisions I made. Almost within the day other people began to show up in my life to help me solve my problems in more proactive ways. Gandhi once said something about how if you have a positive goal people will show up out of nowhere to help you with it.

It was very beneficial for me to have to face that decision, for if I hadn't I might not have seen how important it was for me to continue living the life I had planned for myself and to more vigorously pursue my goals and visions.

"The mightiest space in fortune nature brings to join like likes, and kiss like native things." wrote Shakespeare. It seems amazing and inconceivable to most people that when positive desires are planted in the wind and held there by strong faith, hope and courage nature will nourish them and bring them blossoming back into one's life. It happens too many times not to be true.

DB - The Vagabond
(This is not a contest.)

Who are the 2 (two) most important people alive today? Why?

Only 7 responses so far. Come on people. Think.

Thank you.


Big Mark 243 said...

I think the post and the quote fits you to a tee. Even as I struggle, the will to not give in, not to take a step backward, makes me press on.

Sometimes, the thought of having someone 'assit' me in things do run across my mind... but what will I actually do? I have seen what that kind of encrouchment does to a person, and I can only hope that not until I absolutely need to 'be assisted', will I avail myself of other's help.

There is too much life in me to live that can't be bound by someone making me go to bed at 10pm!!

Arlene (AJ) said...

DB, sorry I've not been around, electrical storm took out lots of things in our neighborhood this past week and we've all been busy getting things fixed. We're ok otherwise. You've had some great reads as usual dear. This one - a great one. I agree....never give up or give into someone who thinks they know what is best for you...we all have to make the right decisions that will work for us, keep us in peace in our hearts and let us keeping moving on to see what tomorrow brings. I personally like to see what challenge comes my way....I'm always willing to hear anyone's opinion, but the final decision on what I do or don't do is mine only and no one elses to make. You're doing what is best for you and that is what truly matters. Take care dear.

Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

Having a challenge to awake to is a great thing. If it is daily life, it can make each and every day sweet or sour, it depends on the outlook.

Beth said...

Oh, I definitely don't see you giving up your autonomy for some time yet! You're too ornery! ;) Hugs, Beth