courage

courage


Magnanimity & Altruism: Saving 50 Jews from Death

magnanimity June 25th, 2020

Eleanor and Gilbert Kraus are very likely two of the greatest unsung heroes in American history – at least, in Jewish history. I watched a documentary about their courageous acts (in 1939), which amounted to nothing less than a full-throated display of magnanimity and altruism. Here is their story. I will also include a selection of quotations about magnanimity by noted Holocaust survivors, human rights activists, altruism researchers, and stalwart exemplars of virtue and honor such as Elie Wiesel, Nelson Mandela, Anne Frank, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Viktor Frankl. 

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Roy Campanella’s Amazing Inspirational Quote

inspirational quote May 16th, 2020

I heard the following amazing story the other day while attending church with my wife. The priest shared it, and it felt like it was essentially a long inspirational quote. I came home and was able to find it online, and am happy I did! It tells the story of the amazing life of Roy Campanella, a Hall of Fame catcher for the Brooklyn Dodgers, and fellow African-American player when Jackie Robinson played. Not only was his career remarkable, his spinal injury and the way he lived his life afterward were also deeply significant. He read a long inspirational quote on the wall of a rehab facility one day, and it floored him. In this blog, I share quite a bit of background about the buoyant, heralded player, human being, quadriplegic, and author Roy Campanella.

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My Friend, John Alexander Marshall

John Alexander Marshall April 22nd, 2020

John Alexander Marshall was one of my closest relationships. We slowly, surely, truly built up a great relationship. It was unlike any other — not just any other I experienced, or he experienced, but compared to all relationships, ever it was fairly unique. I won’t go into too many details, but he would chuckle if he were to read that line. Let me try to prevent myself from going on and on and on and just tell you ten things about John that were unique or interesting. This blog was both fun, and gut-wrenching, for me to write.

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Mueller Lacked the Courage to Stand and Be Counted

Mueller August 1st, 2019

Robert Mueller is reputed to be an upstanding American who exemplifies duty, courage, wisdom, justice, and honor. Last week, Mueller testified in front of two House committees, the Judiciary and the Intelligence Committees. I have been mulling over some thoughts and feelings I have had since that deeply disappointing day. I wanted to examine the behavior and the values evidenced by Mueller, asking whether he was demented, cowardly, or extremely unwise. I will attempt to validate the eminence of values such as duty, courage, wisdom, justice, and honor, though Mueller seemed to come up short in every category on that fateful day. 

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Perseverance Quotes: Never Giving Up

perseverance June 20th, 2018

I was looking at this picture I took in downtown Charleston, SC. it’s an amazing crepe myrtle tree. As you can tell, it only had about a square foot in which to plant its base, and to get rain. What did it do over the last, probably, 50 years? It hung in there, kept on keepin’ on, and stuck with it. It persevered. It coped. It was strong and dedicated. We are much like trees; can we withstand the rigors of life? Deal with the hurricanes and pollution and cars that life entails? Check out these perseverance quotes for a little inspiration and insight. 

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Moral Decision-Making: What Are You Prepared to Do?

moral decision-making December 28th, 2017

In this blog, I would like to share a story that I think illustrates moral decision-making, self-confidence, willingness to risk, justice, sacrifice, and honor. When I was about 20, I faced a moral dilemma that was difficult, and not without costs. It stands today stands as one of the things I’m proud of about myself, though. In fact, anytime one prioritizes the principle of right, the choice to act morally, and the willingness to risk on behalf of the right and the good, one is really living well. It’s the stuff parables from Jesus or difficult dialogue with Socrates are about. It makes us the best we can be if we ask ourselves what are we prepared to do? and answer with courage and determination.

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“Uncommon Pleasure, Reprised”

uncommon pleasure November 30th, 2017

Uncharacteristically bold, I went dancing to try to shake off my social isolation in about 1999. This is the second part of what I call “Uncommon Pleasure,” and is exemplified by the following stanza:

Again, I knew a primal enjoyment
And raised the roof within my mind
Achieving spiritual fulfillment
By what I have found, and will find.

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American Treasure: Helen Keller’s Values

Helen Keller November 3rd, 2017

In this day and age of political unrest, questionable media, and discrepant values, it is a breath of fresh air to read the beautiful words of optimism and understanding. I am referring to the wonderful woman and hero of girls and handicapped individuals everywhere, Helen Keller. She evolved from someone who truly knew hardship and adversity to one who successfully focused her time and energy into the worthy pursuits of growth, happiness, love, and compromise. She pushed her own (and society’s) boundaries and became someone great. Who was Helen, and what can we learn from her?

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“Uncommon Pleasure”

uncommon pleasure November 2nd, 2017

Taking a rare break from social insecurity, I went dancing, alone, and sober. It took courage, but paid off pretty big. Here is an example:

Alas, my dancing is not great
And conversation seemed trite
But I wonder if my partner, Fate
Will grace me on a future night

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Risk: Nothing Ventured, Nothing Gained

Risk can be taken too far May 26th, 2017

The following quotations are about risk. Indeed, willingness to risk is one of the values of the wise: the values which wise persons seek to cultivate within themselves and aspire to. You may have heard the oft-quoted dictum, “nothing ventured, nothing gained.” It indicates that risk, if calculated and taken with a full measure of responsibility, can be a wise move because the payoff is greater than to always “play it safe.” One of the best quotations on risk comes from Grace Hopper: “A ship in harbor is safe, but that’s not what ships are built for.” It’s a fierce elevation of trying hard, asking that woman out, trying to get the raise you’ve been earning, and going ahead with chemotherapy. “Fortune favors the bold,” Terence said centuries ago. But don’t go too far, or be foolhardy. Aristotle taught that virtue lies between two extremes: for example, courage is wise but cowardice is not – and neither is rashness or foolhardiness. The boldly courageous philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche astutely summed this angle up with this classic quote on risk:

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