There is a tide in the affairs of men, which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune. Omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries. On such a full sea are we now afloat. And we must take the current when it serves, or lose our ventures.
William Shakespeare From Julius Caesar
And you thought this economic crises was personal? Since Shakespeare spoke about similar challenges as those we face today 500 years ago, no less grand and world changing than today’s financial crises, the eternal nature of difficult times gives us some perspective.
The greatest challenge we face is in recognizing the signs and then is being flexible enough to adapt and react without creating tragedies. (By the way, Julius Caesar is a tragedy. That’s something we want to avoid, right?….) When working with clients atLodeStar Universal, my role is to make sure that people things clearly, choosing courses of action that prevent tragedy.
Shakespeare, through his plays, presents timeless issues. Here he tells us that timing, free
will, perilous times, and fate are eternal human challenges. They are hardly new to 2009. As one unknown scholar eloquently states in reference to this passage, “Shakespeare asks his audience to contemplate the forces of fate versus free will and ponder whether characters might be able to prevent tragedy if they could only understand and heed the many omens that they encounter.” Can we achieve success through virtue, ambition, courage, and commitment; or are we simply fated to succeed or fail, with no ability to affect our destiny?
Human beings must be savvy enough to recognize when fate offers an opportunity and bold enough to take advantage of it. Shakespeare seems to be saying that there is a “delicate and valuable balance between fate and free will.”
It seems reality lies somewhere within this delicate balance.
“This philosophy seems wise; it contains a certain beauty as well, suggesting that while we do not have total control over our lives, we do have a responsibility to take what few measures we can to live nobly and honorably. The only problem, as the play illustrates over and over again, is that it is not always so easy to recognize these nudges of fate, be they opportunities or warnings.”
My clients know the value I place on reading a diversity of books. Reading not only gives us knowledge. It provides us with perspective to evaluate current circumstances.
External knowledge earned and internal knowledge honed are paths to wisdom, based on my experiences.