Bobby Jones, the greatest golfer to ever live, was a professional lawyer & an amateur linksman. While his passion was golf, he realized that he had to maintain that amateur status in order for him to fully be what he was on the golf course.
Now, for the record — I’m not claiming to be any great philosopher or anything. No sir, far from it. As the title suggests, I am most assuredly a work-in-progress in so many ways. |
I embraced Stoicism at an early age well before I had any understanding of what this discipline exactly was.
You likely know how cruel kids can be, especially when you’re maybe just a little bit different.
From about the time I was in about 2nd or 3rd grade I realized that most folks were one or more of the following:
…and many more. Or, the old line about how there's more than enough good & evil in each & everyone of us.
However, in middle school (and high school for that matter), a lot of kids matched the top four of the aforementioned list as many can attest.
For whatever reason, I was able to know & accept this at an early age.
Maybe I was lucky; maybe I was cursed. Regardless, it was just simply what it was. Moreover, that’s just how it was & I got that.
Later, I realized, sadly, a lot of folks never get & understand this.
Nobody ever (or should’ve ever) said life was fair.
It was in 1999 when I first read A Man in Full by Tom Wolfe.
It blew my mind.
The inner dialogue of literally every main character was so very much similar to mine.
It was such an experience that I ended up reading that book once every year for several years in a row.
The overarching theme?
Yep, you guessed it — Stoicism.
Everybody’s least &simultaneously most favorite expression fully captures that sentiment:
“It is what it is.”
A big thing here recently is this generational casting of shade.
Whether it’s the Baby Boomers, The Millennials or Gen Z.
I truly think all of this is unnecessary, I really do.
Painting w/ such broad brush strokes is almost always the wrong way to go.
There are stand-up, top-notch Silent Generation, Baby Boomer, Gen X, as well as Gen Y & Z types.
It’s true. I know some of each.
Now, the numbers may very well skew a certain way. Obviously Gen X is epic (and will likely save our country - if it can be saved) but there are a large number of the Baby Boomers & Gen Y folks who seem to simply suck ass apparently.
But what of the Gen Z crew, though? Hard, sometimes, to get a bead on them. They could go either way, right? At least a lot of them are foregoing social media.
But why do we do this? It’s all so unnecessary. I truly think all of this generational divide & strife is by design. Divide & Conquer — the Bad Guys’ playbook.
To me, Stoicism is simply the realization that we are NOT in control.
It could be worse. We could be animals where most of the time we would wake up every day realizing that we could very well be chased down & eaten by a predator. Where it was all simply about survival.
(((obligatory self-awareness realization)))
You WILL die someday; or, as the Old Folks would say — “We all gotta pay that debt.”
Death is always just around the corner, lurking, lying in wait.
God-awful & terrible things happen to the best people in this world while some of the worst seem to very much lead charmed lives.
That’s a hard thing to square.
It’s always been that way & it always will, for this is just the earthly realm, and that’s simply the way it is.