Category Archives: Blog

In Pursuit of Excellence

“Hercules,” says she [Virtue], “I offer myself to you, because I know you are descended from the gods, and give proofs of that descent by your love to virtue, and application to the studies proper for your age. This makes me hope you will gain, both for yourself and me, an immortal reputation.

But, before I invite you into my society and friendship, I will be open and sincere with you, and must lay down this, as an established truth, that there is nothing truly valuable which can be purchased without pains and labor. The gods have set a price upon every real and noble pleasure.

If you would gain the favor of the Deity, you must be at the pains of worshiping him: if the friendship of good men, you must study to oblige them: if you would be honored by your country, you must take care to serve it. In short, if you would be eminent in war or peace, you must become master of all the qualifications that can make you so. These are the only terms and conditions upon which I can propose happiness.” – The Choice of Hercules, Xenophon

“I wish to preach, not the doctrine of ignoble ease, but the doctrine of the strenuous life, the life of toil and effort, of labor and strife; to preach that highest form of success which comes, not to the man of who desires more easy peace, but to the man who does not shrink from danger, from hardship, or from bitter toil, and who out of these wins the splendid ultimate triumph.”- Teddy Roosevelt

Fortuna

Life never goes according to plan. I learned that a long time ago and yet I still find myself wondering how the hell did things get to this point. For instance, I never thought going off to college my freshman year that I would be academically dismissed due to choosing the wrong major. I never thought I’d go through the things I went through to get me where I needed to be rather than where I wanted to go.

Life has a funny way of taking your intentions and plans and turning them on themselves. As if it’s saying, “Oh you have a plan, that’s nice; here’s a kick to the face to shake things up.” Of course what you do with what life throws at you is all on you.

The ancient Greeks and Romans had a concept of fate, they called it Tyche, Fortuna or fortune. A blind capricious young woman who carried a cornucopia and rode her wheel of fate. At her whim, men and kingdoms rose and fell. But only by those who knew how to make use of the opportunities and chaos she presented.

As of this moment, I am about to embark on an internship in the state government at Sacramento. I hardly have any money, no place to live out there and no contacts what so ever. Oh, and other university students, from universities all over the state, will also be joining in the internship. So this is like Game of Thrones combined with the Hunger Games taking place in the gladiatorial arena that is the state capital.

I have no idea what is going to happen. But, what I do have in  my 25 years on this earth, is street knowledge combined with my book smarts. Like Machiavelli said, “I have found among my possessions nothing that I esteem higher than my knowledge of the deeds of great men.” Knowledge is indeed power, and so is wisdom. Fortuna is presenting me with an opportunity, like all great men before me, what I do with this opportunity is up to me. As a New Prince, let’s get started.