Your Best Personal Defense

When are you most vulnerable to attack?

I spend much of my time trying to prepare my personal defenses. I want to actively put myself into position where a personal attack against me is not possible.That means I need to be physically strong, mentally strong, and of course spiritually strong. Compromising your character is out of the question. Your name, which is your most valuable asset, has to be impregnable.

When am I my weakest? When am I most easily attacked? When does the enemy, all those outside influences seeking to do you harm, have the greatest opportunity to strike. The enemy attacks when your mind is at it weakest.

Marcus Aurelius said, “You have power of your mind – not outside events. Realize this and you will find strength.” You are weakest, when you lose control over your mind. When are you susceptible to losing that control? It is when you are angry. It is hard to be angry and think straight. It is hard to make rational decisions in anger. This is when you are at your weakest. This is when you are vulnerable to attack. Remember your character is on the line. Your name is on the line. Hold the line! Do not become a victim of your own stupidity.

My son:

A city breached and left defenseless are those who do not control their temper. -Proverbs 25:28

Dreaming of His Future

From the day he was born, it was easy to imagine all the things he might do in life. I could see his athletic prowess on the field of play, and it didn’t even matter what field he was playing on. It didn’t matter if he still hadn’t taken his first step. The idea of him not liking sports never entered the picture of my imagination. The same imagination that envisioned a young Einstein with a certain love for reading the classics. At his earliest age, I imagined endless possibilities of what his future would bring.

But in the end, does it really matter? Who cares what sport he chooses, if he even chooses one. I hope he does, and then my hope is that he gives it everything he’s got. Along the lines of academics, my wish is that he does the best he can. I actually don’t care which direction his future goes, as long as he has just one thing. What would make me really happy about his future?

My son, if your heart is wise, my heart will also rejoice. -Proverbs 23:15

 


Later this week I hope to post my thoughts on being sick. That’s where I have been the last 6 days.

A Key to Wisdom

Knowledge can be passed on. So can understanding. You can be smart, and be without wisdom. I wish I could give you wisdom, but I cannot. You have to find it for yourself. It will not come to you overnight. It is a process. A very long, arduous process. One, that hopefully you will be striving for your whole life.

Though I can’t give you wisdom, I can give you a tip. It is a key to unlocking this door. Listen to those who are wise. Let them be your teachers. Find the ones that are on the right path and learn from them.

My son:

Listen to counsel and receive instruction, that you may eventually be wise. -Proverbs 19:20

Siddhartha by Herman Hesse

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Do you ever read a book that just seems magical? I’m not speaking about magic in a book, but the words, the content, the meanings all seem magical. When I read Siddhartha by Herman Hesse, that was what I experienced magic.

Once all of my self was overcome and had died, once every desire and every urge was silent in the heart, then the ultimate part of me had to awake, the innermost of my being, which is no longer my self, the great secret.

When I was young, I was very passionate about living a “holy” life. I had thoughts of becoming a missionary. I wanted to run away from the things of this world and live in obscurity in the most meager way. Reflecting back on it, I think part of me was scared and lost. I wasn’t ready for the great, big world and instead wanted to seclude myself in the smallest part of it I could find.

In my 20’s and 30’s, my eyes  were opened up to the ways of the world. I left the part of me that wanted to live as an ascetic behind. I began to live for pleasure. The things I consumed were not because I needed it, but because I wanted it. It was during this time, I allowed the undesirable things to slowly creep into my life. The darkness began to seep into my soul and threatened to corrupt the things I once held precious. During this time, I was still trying to escape. The memories of my youth haunted me. I began to live in the past, dulled in the present, and blind to the future.

Then a time came when those worldly things were no longer important. They began to lose their luster. Food became less about pleasing my belly, and more about fueling my body. Alcohol no longer became a tool of escape to dull the senses. My mind and my body even started to reject the idea of laziness. Those things of the world now seem vain and fleeting. Worthless.

This is how it is when Siddhartha has a goal, a resolution. Siddhartha does nothing, he waits, he thinks, he fasts, but he passes through the things of the world like a rock through water, without doing anything, without stirring; he is drawn, he lets himself fall. His goal attracts him, because he doesn’t let anything enter his soul which might oppose the goal.

img_0471As I move into this next stage of my life, I am also drawn to a goal. I am attracted by the things which are greater than myself. I am striving toward that which goes beyond this lifetime.

Even with him, even with your great teacher, I prefer the thing over the words, place more importance on his acts and life than on his speeches, more on the gesture of his hand than his opinions. Not in his speech, not in his thoughts, I see his greatness, only in his actions, in his life.