Tuesday, January 08, 2008

“Nietzsche was the one who did the job for me. At a certain moment in his life, the idea came to him of what he called 'the love of your fate.' Whatever your fate is, whatever the hell happens, you say, 'This is what I need.' It may look like a wreck, but go at it as though it were an opportunity, a challenge. If you bring love to that moment--not discouragement--you will find the strength is there.

Any disaster that you can survive is an improvement in your character, your stature, and your life. What a privilege! This is when the spontaneity of your own nature will have a chance to flow. Then, when looking back at your life, you will see that the moments which seemed to be great failures followed by wreckage were the incidents that shaped the life you have now. You’ll see that this is really true. Nothing can happen to you that is not positive. Even though it looks and feels at the moment like a negative crisis, it is not. The crisis throws you back, and when you are required to exhibit strength, it comes.”


-Joseph Campbell

7 comments:

GrizzBabe said...

In my head, I know that to be true but it's really hard to break the habit of always fearing the worst.

steve said...

i've been through some things I would never have planned , they were disasters...one of the things that fate did for me was to ease my temper...make me a nicer guy.

GEWELS said...

Love this post! Steve directed me here today.
I have to say that I have tried to teach my kids this very same thing. They're both going through some tough times- financially and personally- and I try to encourage them and tell them that it works out the way it needs to. They just need to see each failure as an opportunity to learn and move forward.
I'm linking you too.

Huckleberry said...

I'm gonna bit my tongue.
I don't wanna ruin the enthusiasm...

kissyface said...

Huck - there will be no tongue biting in your corner, Sir. Fire away.

Huckleberry said...

Very well.
But do remember my earlier admonishment -- the pegasus was no match for the Luftwaffe!

Whatever your fate is, whatever the hell happens, you say, 'This is what I need.'

That's a rather rousing bit of masochism, isn't it?

If you bring love to that moment--not discouragement--you will find the strength is there.

Quite the understatement to utility of despair and/or discouragement.
Passion -- "love" if you prefer -- is not animus.
What our fine friend Mr. Campbell here suggests is much to passive for that.

Any disaster that you can survive is an improvement in your character, your stature, and your life.

Yes, except for all the times it doesn't.

What a privilege!

I wasn't really using those limbs anyway...

Then, when looking back at your life, you will see that the moments which seemed to be great failures followed by wreckage were the incidents that shaped the life you have now.

Only if followed by some measure of success, lest those failures form the foundation of a lifetime of bitterness with each new reflection.
Are we having fun yet?

Nothing can happen to you that is not positive.

Well, that's good news then.
Lie back and think of England?

Even though it looks and feels at the moment like a negative crisis, it is not. The crisis throws you back, and when you are required to exhibit strength, it comes.”

Unless, of course, as mentioned before, one doesn't survive.
Better luck next time, I guess?

All of this is fun and useful up to the point one realizes that wishful thinking is no basis for the cultivation of a healthy psychological disposition.
Not to put too fine a point on it or anything though...

steve said...

Strikes me that the above may be the basis for a healthier psychological disposition...
i approached my didasters with a pretty negative outlook went for years without any measure of success; in fact quite the opposite, and STILL came out a better man for it.
And it wasn't some inward strength that saved me as much as a couple of good breaks.
Fate, if you will.