Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Bringing life to the world

As Joseph Campbell, the extraordinary writer of The Hero with a Thousand Faces and other fantastic books, said in the interviews he did with Bill Moyers in the late 80's, "A vital person vitalizes. If you find where your own life is, then you will bring life to the world."

And how do we find where our life is? Through "trials and revelations" Campbell might say. In daily-life speak that means by setting and meeting challenges in our lives, through which we test and expand the limits of our own capacity. One of the great self-testing grounds is sports. Sure, how you do in, say, a marathon, does not ultimately matter. But what does matter is how you approach the challenge, and that you do it at all. It's how you discipline yourself, how you keep going when the going is rough (or tiring, or just plain boring), and how you deal with the inevitable "failures"along the way. It's the putting yourself out there. It's taking the risk that you might not achieve what you set out to do. All of these things, that we come to know so intimately from sports, help us to know ourselves, to find our life, to bring life to the world.

Energy is infectious--so make sure you're spreading good energy around, not bad. Be vital, and vitalize others.