Wednesday, February 1, 2012

i-TFTD #354: An Exercise in Perspective

#354-1. Who breaks the thread, the one who pulls, the one who holds on?
-James Richardson, poet, professor (b. 1950)

#354-2. When the oak is felled the whole forest echoes with its fall, but a hundred acorns are sown in silence by an unnoticed breeze.
-Thomas Carlyle, historian and essayist (1795-1881)

#354-3. We are so accustomed to disguise ourselves to others that in the end we become disguised to ourselves.
-Francois, duc de La Rochefoucauld, moralist (1613-1680)

I find these very profound. Each has multiple reminders that could be extracted.

From the first:
-Depending on the situation, the one holding on could be more blameworthy
-In some situations holding on (or pulling) is simply the only right thing to do, regardless of what the other does
-Many top leaders in politics and business are experts at brinkmanship, holding on or pulling beyond what a reasonable person would be expected to
-Breaking the thread might be a good thing so we are not necessarily talking of blame but credit. Could we think of real examples of those who "hold on" in order to induce change?

From the second:
-Many good things are all around us, we tend to pay too much attention to the negative
-For every calamity there are many more positive possibilities opening up
-Creation and creativity often emerges out of destruction
-Nature always finds a way (as observed by Malcolm the mathematician character in "Jurassic Park" by Michael Crichton)
-The first thing that occurred to me when I read this is that I would like to be like the unnoticed breeze.

Useful interpretations from the third one are left--as the cliché goes--"as an exercise for the reader".