Happy Monday love bugs. So this week we are going to put a little spin on Motivational Monday. Rather than giving my input on a motivational topic, I want to post something and let you all take from it what you will. One of my favorite things about literature is that there is never a right answer or approach to a piece of writing. Whether it’s a poem, a short story, or a lecture, you can always pull your own thoughts and emotions from the words that you are reading and that is the real beauty of it: finding your own lessons and meanings.
David Foster Wallace is what I would consider, one of the most influential writers of my time. A genius with words and hands down one of the most interesting/private people to roam this Earth. While an established author, Mr. Wallace was never one to publicly gloat about his work. In fact, the man behind multiple award winning books, spent his entire life battling depression and eventually ended his own life at age 46. Isn’t that the real irony of life: the truly talented people suffer their own inner demons their whole lives? Before he left is here on Earth, Wallace graced the world with one (and only one) public speech about his views on life. It was a commencement address from the 2005 class at Kenyon College that not only became one of the most memorable speeches of all time, but also landed itself inside the walls of an actual book.
The following quotes are excerpts from the commencement address and it will be up to you to find the real meaning to the words…
“There are these two young fish swimming along and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says “Morning, boys. How’s the water?” And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes “What the hell is water?”
“There are all different kinds of freedom, and the kind that is most precious you will not hear much talk about much in the great outside world of wanting and achieving…. The really important kind of freedom involves attention and awareness and discipline, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them over and over in myriad petty, unsexy ways every day. That is real freedom. That is being educated, and understanding how to think. The alternative is unconsciousness, the default setting, the rat race, the constant gnawing sense of having had, and lost, some infinite thing.”
“Learning how to think” really means learning how to exercise some control over how and what you think.
It means being conscious and aware enough to choose what you pay attention to and to choose how you construct meaning from experience. Because if you cannot or will not exercise this kind of choice in adult life, you will be totally hosed.”
This Is Water: Some Thoughts, Delivered on a Significant Occasion about Living a Compassionate Life can be purchased here.Pin It