Wonderful lessons which we can learn from a simple illustration of geese flying in a “V” formation; this is so applicable to us in real life.
Next fall, when you see geese heading South for the Winter, flying along in “V” formation, you might consider what science has discovered as to why they fly that way: as each bird flaps its wings, it creates an uplift for the bird immediately following. By flying in “V” formation the whole flock adds at least 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew on its own.
Lesson #1: People who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going more quickly and easily because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.
When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to go it alone and quickly gets back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird in front.
Lesson #2: If we have as much sense as a goose, we will stay in formation with those who are headed the same way we are.
When the Head goose gets tired, it rotates back in the wing and another goose flies point.
Lesson #3: It is sensible to take turns doing demanding jobs with people or with geese flying South.
Geese honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep up their speed.
Lesson #4: What do we say when we honk from behind?
Finally, and this is important, when a goose gets sick, or is wounded by gunshots and falls out of formation, two other geese fall out with that goose and follow it down to lend help and protection. They stay with the fallen goose until it is able to fly, or until it dies. Only then do they launch out on their own, or with another formation to catch up with their group.
Lesson #5: IF WE HAVE THE SENSE OF A GOOSE, WE WILL STAND BY EACH OTHER LIKE THAT.
‘Possibility‘ is a wonderful and inspiring poem by Ralph Marston. Indeed, there are many possibilities around us and yet some of us choose to see otherwise. Something which I always say, “a coin has two sides“; there are always good and bad in something. The choice is which side do we choose to focus on. Earl Nightingale said, “We become what we think about.”
As the saying goes, ‘As we sow, so shall we reap’ … and this is the same truth of the thoughts we put in our minds. The mind doesn’t care what we put inside, it is our choices what we choose to put inside. But what we put into our mind, it must return back to us. If we constantly put negative thoughts into our mind, we will get negative results in our life and if we put positive thoughts into our mind, yes, we get positive results. And thus the ‘possibility’ when we look at a seed; some will see the becoming of a forest and some will just hold on to that one precious seed. In the end, the seed doesn’t even get a chance to be planted.
I hope this poem by Ralph Marston will inspire to see the possibility in life too.
________________________________ Possibility by Ralph Marston
In the seed, there is a forest waiting to grow.
On the artist’s canvas, a masterpiece is waiting to be painted.
In the engineer’s workstation,
a technical breakthrough is waiting to be developed.
Everywhere there is possibility.
Every moment of every life is filled with possibilities,
and the next moment as well.
Every problem has a possible solution.
Every goal has a possibility of achievement.
Right now, right this moment,
your life has possibilities that you never even considered.
Possibilities you can follow to overcome the challenges you face.
Possibilities that can bring joy and fulfilment.
There is a pathway leading to wherever you want to go.
All you need to do is find it and start the journey.
Today does not have to be like yesterday.
There are plenty of other possibilities.
Consider your possibilities. Follow your possibilities.
Open yourself to what could be, and make it so.
“Risk anything! Care no more for the opinion of others … Do the hardest thing on earth for you. Act for yourself. Face the truth.” – Katherine Mansfield
No one might have known it better than Daniel Eugene “Rudy” Ruettiger about acting for oneself and facing the truth. Rudy harboured a dream to play for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team, despite being merely 5’6″ and 165 pounds – an undersized player, and lacking the grades – because he was dyslexic – and also lacking the money necessary to attend Notre Dame. He prepared to settle down with a job at a local steel mill like his father, but when his best friend Pete was killed in an explosion at the mill, Rudy decided to follow his dream of attending Notre Dame and playing for the Fighting Irish.
He went on to fulfill his dream to attend Notre Dame and to play for the Fighting Irish at home as defensive end against Georgia Tech on November 8, 1975, in his final senior season; achieving all these despite being constantly mocked at, disbelief from even people who are closest to him – his family, and numerous rejection from Notre Dame. Not only had Rudy achieved his dreams, he had also gone on to achieve the dreams of his father and to inspire the people around him.
Haven’t we received countless advises from family and friends when we voiced out what we want to do? That we cannot do this or do that. No doubt they are concerned about our well-being and yet these well-meaning advises can kill our dreams even before we start. After all the wet blankets that were thrown to us, we were somehow convinced, “Yes, they are right, we could’t do it. It wouldn’t work.” As much as we must not become overly stubborn and persistent towards the pursue of our dreams, we must be prepared to stand up and believe in our dreams.
However, in the pursue of our dreams, we must be mentally prepared to go on the journey alone at times and it will be a bonus if we happen to have anyone walking with us. We must be determined to do the only thing we could do – determined to save the only life we could save.
_________________________________ Journey by Mary Oliver
One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
their bad advice –
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do –
determined to save
the only life you could save.
Read about this inspiring prose poem ‘Desiderata’ (Latin: “desired things”) from a friend’s blog today and just wanted to share this inspirational prose poem over here in Symphony of Love too. I hope that ‘Desiderata’ can help to put life back in perspective for you as it has for me when I was reading it. And I believe that it will touch you as it has touched the lives of many who have read this poem before.
Quoting a few lines from the poem, “… You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here … With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy.”
Desiderata by Max Ehrmann in 1927
Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be critical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy.
________________________________ Listen to the beautiful recital of Desiderata by Les Crane
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