Where Great Men Are Made

The place which developed thousands of boys to be men of stature for over 165 year, the place I had the good fortune of being nurtured, St Anthony’s Collage in Kandy, the hill capital of Sri Lanka. The picture speaks of the nurturing location on the banks of the Mahaweli river, the space provided for sports signifying the importance of the development of the body in addition to the mind. To write about the great men produced by St Anthony’s will take a few books. All I have is gratitude for my alma mater.

The Pandemic and Temporal Aspect of Purposefulness

Image Credit: Nationalpost.com

In the last 8 blog posts in the ‘purpose quest series’, we explored how the pandemic impacted eight important pillars for purposeful living; spiritual, mental, emotional, relational, physical (health), financial, environmental and societal. Let’s explore the ninth pillar, the ‘temporal’ aspect in this blog post. As in the past eight blog posts let me attempt to describe my personal experience during the pandemic. 

The word ‘Temporal’ has two broad applications; relating to worldly as opposed to spiritual affairs (secular) and relating to time. I use the word in relation to the use of time. The temporal aspect of purposeful relates to the use of limited time. The purposeful person attempts to utilise most of the time for purposeful activity, which requires letting go of non-purposeful activity.

The last eight weekly blog posts in the ‘purposeful quest’ series illustrated how my time was allocated to purposeful activity in spiritual, mental, emotional, relational, physical (health), financial, ecological and temporal areas. These activities took most of my waking time and there was rarely any time remaining for non-purposeful activity during the approximately 16 hours of waking time.

The sense I make from this reflection is that the pandemic gave me so much opportunities to be purposeful, that it left me with almost no time for non-purposeful activities. This way of life has kept me occupied in meaningful and energising activity, giving me inner success, happiness and peace. My purpose is to inspire others to live a purposeful life and I hope this series of blog posts will inspire you too to live a purposeful life and find Success happiness and peace.

How You Lived Will Epitomise Your Death

How Did You Die? – Edmund Vance Cooke

Reflect on the deeper meaning of this poem as you listen to it and read the lyrics below. How did you respond to trouble times? What did you do when you fell down? What is real success & failure? How would you face life’s challenges from now onwards?

Read by Shane Morris – Full Poem:

Did you tackle that trouble that came your way

With a resolute heart and cheerful?

Or hide your face from the light of day

With a craven soul and fearful? 

Oh, a trouble’s a ton, or a trouble’s an ounce,

Or a trouble is what you make it,

And it isn’t the fact that you’re hurt that counts,

But only how did you take it? 

You are beaten to earth?

Well, well, what’s that!Come up with a smiling face.

It’s nothing against you to fall down flat,

But to lie there-that’s disgrace. 

The harder you’re thrown, why the higher you bounce

Be proud of your blackened eye!

It isn’t the fact that you’re licked that counts;

It’s how did you fight-and why? 

And though you be done to the death, what then?

If you battled the best you could,

If you played your part in the world of men,

Why, the Critic will call it good. 

Death comes with a crawl, or comes with a pounce,

And whether he’s slow or spry,

It isn’t the fact that you’re dead that counts,

But only how did you die?

Liberating Empathy

Can empathy be developed or Liberated? As you watch this video, reflect on this questions. Consider how important empathy is for leadership success. Is there an ideal amount of empathy? Could empathy be too much or two little? What steps would you take to liberate the ideal amount of empathy from within you for your leadership success.

The following process can be used to create a learning experience for your team using this video.

Step 1 – A moderator (an expert from your company) to open the session, explaining the importance of the session.

Step 2 – Show the video – let participants absorb, take notes and write down questions to ask later

Step 3 – Have a Q&A session and a discussion

Step 4 – Agree on actions to be taken based on the video

Step 5 – Participants to say how the session was useful.

Something Inside So Strong – To Make You Rise Above the Odds …

Something Inside So Strong – Lewisham And Greenwich NHS Choir

As you listen to this powerful song, let the strength inside you awaken and fight against the odds so that your bright light will blind the darkness.

Lyrics

The higher you build your barriers
The taller I become
The further you take my rights away
The faster I will run
You can deny me, you can decide
To turn your face away
No matter ’cause there’sSomething inside so strong
I know that I can make it
Though you’re doing me wrong, so wrong
You thought that my pride was gone, oh no
There’s something inside so strong
Oh, something inside so strongThe more you refuse to hear my voice (ooh-weh ooh-weh ooh-weh ooh-weh)
The louder I will sing
You hide behind walls of Jericho (ooh-weh ooh-weh ooh-weh ooh-weh)
Your lies will come tumbling
Deny my place in time, you squander wealth that’s mine
My light will shine so brightly it will blind you
Because there’sSomething inside so strong, strong
I know that I can make it
Though…

Living Life To The Fullest as the Captain of Your Life

O Captain Mu Captain – Walt Whitman

Reflect on the deeper meaning of this poem as you listen to it and read the lyrics below. Who is the captain of your life? How will you live to be able to be happy on your last day feeling that that you lived it all.

O Captain, my Captain our fearful trip is done
The ship has weathered every rack, the prize we sought is won
The port is near, the bells I hear, the people are exulting,  
While follow eyes the steady keel, the vessel grim and daring  
But O heart! heart! heart!  
O the bleeding drops of red,  
Where on the deck my Captain lies,  
Fallen cold and dead.  

O Captain, my Captain (x3)

O Captain, my Captain rise up and hear the bells  
Rise up—for you the flag is flung—for you the bugle trills
For you bouquets and ribboned wreaths—for you the shores a-crowding  
For you they call (the swaying mass)
their eager faces turning (their eager faces turning)
Here Captain! dear father!  
This arm beneath your head  
It is some dream that on the deck, 
You’ve fallen cold and dead. Dead.

My Captain does not answer, his lips are pale and still  
My father does not feel my arm, he has no pulse nor will  
The ship is anchored safe and sound, its voyage closed and done  
From fearful trip, the victor ship, comes in with this object won
Exult, O shores, and ring, O bells!  
But I, with mournful tread,  
Walk the deck my Captain lies,  
Fallen cold and dead. Fallen cold and dead.

It’s a Possibility, with Your Heart the Hunter, to find Peace and Happiness

It’s a possibility – John Denver

As you listen to this beautiful song reflect on how you can use your heart, the hunter to fight off hatred and help find peace and happiness in your little world, thereby creating ripples to make this world a better place.

Lyrics

For all of the times that you’ve wondered why
The world turned out this way
And all of the times that you’ve asked yourself
About the games that people play.

About the politics of hunger
And the politics of need,
How the politics of power
Seem to be the politics of greed.

For all of the times that you’ve struggled in an effort
To work your way back up stream,
And all of the times you’ve held on to it,
When most of us had lost the dream.

And for all of the ones who have walked with you,
By your side or way back home,
Maybe much more than any of us
You know that no one is really alone.

Because the heart is still a hunter,
It’s like a beacon in the night.
Though the heart is just a lover,
It’s never afraid to fight.

We are fighting for more than survival,
We are…

What’s Your True North?

Anne Hathaway Keynote Address International Women’s Day 2017

As you listen to this speech, reflect on how it speaks to your heart and mind. Is it about the rags to riches story? Is it about love? Is it about parenting? Is it about gender equality? Is it about speaking out on behalf of your concerns? Is it it about your sense of direction? Is it something else? Reflect on what matters to you and the baby steps you would take to make a difference.