“When the falcon strikes the heart of its prey, this is timing… When the swollen river carries boulders, this is momentum.”
Sun Tzu… “The Art of War”
It is agreed by all military intelligence folk, that Sun Tzu’ s “The Art of War” is a must read/study if one wants to truly understand all about the topic in question. I cannot say I have read it in its entirety, but it is very likely I will at some time or another. Being someone who prefers strategic peace to strategic war… Why would I?
Well, the principles brought forward in these ancient treaties apply to all facets of life. Be it at war or in peace, in the business world, in the sports world or at home. This last, as those of you who are married for some time can attest, could easily become the mother of all battlefields, to paraphrase a “departed leader”.
From the very beginning of our –at least my- adult training, we are reminded at every possible moment that timing is every thing in life. I have to agree this is true; too many times failure has been the result of untimely decisions. Both, at home and at work. At other times, the same decisions have brought good results and the only difference has been that of timing. Yes, before you say anything… the circumstances have been very similar in the different occasions.
As far as momentum goes, the rules are not too different. Have you ever been “on a roll”? Or in any of its variations? A day when it seems that, no matter what crazy thing you do, it comes out right? Yes, we have all had a few of those days… to go balance those days when momentum, as per definition, seems to be totally absent from our lives. Or worse, heading in the wrong direction.
Whenever I begin to think about these issues… yes, I know, not earth shattering issues, but… it brings me more and more into the realm of “The Secret”… and other related areas of somewhat esoteric undertakings. These are not totally unrelated, as I can see and understand.
“The Secret” tells us throughout the book which, in reality is a compendium of the work of different authors, that we as individuals make our own world. We have the capacity to bring on the “good” effects of positive attitude and positive thinking but, on the other hand, we also bring on the negative effects of depressive thinking. No, I don’t really think that what is meant is that we can go to bed dreaming about millions and that upon waking up, these will be there waiting for us.
But I do think that constant positivism, in the face of the worst adversities, will help us pull victory out of the jaws of the proverbial defeat. This, of course, well supported by a constant effort at doing better. There have been some extreme experiences in these past 9 or so years which bear this out. At least for me.
What I have found to be most difficult to overcome, are not the issues to be faced, or the losses, or the failures… What I truly find most difficult to manage, is the negative influence those nearest have on us. People I cannot ignore, who are a part of my daily life and who feel almost betrayed if I don’t hang my head down when faced with a negative situation. There have been times when I have been accused of not having feelings, or of not caring enough… just because I refuse to give in or to run around like the chicken with its head cut off.
There has been a great deal of good weight from my early teachings in these areas; the concept of not caring so much for material things so as to make them the center of my life’s goal, was well ingrained. Much I have lost at one time or another; a friend once told me that others, facing the losses we have faced along these ways, might have done something foolish… A thought that has, truly, never entered my mind in its remotest corner(s). For that I thank, once again, my grandfather for his teachings and –most of all- for the living example he set for me as a child and as a young adult during what must have been extremely trying times for him, as he saw the fruits of all his life’s efforts being taken away by the government.
Expounding on the last posting… life really is a continuum. A continuum which we can actually steer, if we put our minds to it. And going back to Sun Tzu’s work, which started this torrent of words (well, a nicely moving trickle, if you may) we need to apply his wisdom to pretty much all facets of life. They are each a proving ground where tests are presented on a daily basis; tests which sometimes, in failing to pass muster, change the course of our lives.
The only thing is that in these tests we do not get a graded paper back, to be able to practice some more so we can repeat the test and maybe do a little better. These will only show their hand over time… often long after the actual instance has taken place and we don’t really know why something else is happening. We cannot correlate this now happening with that some (or long) time ago issue and, as a result, chalk it up to “cosas de la vida” or, as we simply say in English… “stuff”...
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