INSPIRATION FOR TODAY:
"In Italy, for thirty years under the Borgias, they had warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, and the Renaissance. In Switzerland, they had brotherly love, they had five hundred years of democracy and peace - and what did they produce? The cuckoo clock."
~ From the movie "The Third Man" (1949)
THE CUCKOO BIRD OF HAPPINESS!
This passage makes you ponder where our inspiration and our motivation come from. How many great movements came out of times of peace? Not to knock happiness, but complacency tends to breed laziness, unless we keep ourselves aware of the issues that might truly affect us.
We're all familiar with the concept of the "starving artist" - rationalized for ages now by saying one must suffer for one's art. Of course, this isn't necessarily true. Plenty of beautiful art and literature has been produced by "happy" people. But isn't it interesting that the most controversial, thought-provoking, and powerful works do in fact come out of suffering and a desire to educate others about suffering, cruelty, and wrong-doing?
It seems that people really get motivated by what angers them - when we're happy and complacent, we tend not to get involved in troubling issues. Apathy often arises when we feel that we simply have no say in the result, when we feel disempowered or our vote doesn't really count. But very often our apathy is the result of the fact that overall, we feel pretty good about our situation and feel that we don't necessarily need to get involved - we're happy with the way things are, so let them be and let other people worry about the issues that affect them.
It's our problems - and how we handle them - that help us to grow as individuals. Those challenges in our lives force us to find solutions, solutions that sometimes mean changing ourselves in some way, or changing how we interact with others. Too much "smooth sailing" can leave you asleep at the rudder! Try to see your problems and challenges as opportunities to produce something great or effect a change for the better.
If you're fortunate enough to say, "I am truly happy with all things as they are in my life," then don't become complacent. Find yourself a cause that you believe in and become involved in its promotion. Your life and the lives of those around you will become better for it!