There was an incident at my workplace on Saturday where a length of rail flicked out and snapped the ankle of a supervisor. He will be undergoing surgery and physiotherapy for six weeks. The accident could have been avoidable by a more vigilant individual, but what is done is done. What is considered important now is how he recovers. More importantly, how he chooses to recover. Whether he complains and attempts to make himself the object of pity, or shows fortitude and recovers with dignity and conviction. That is how we find his measure in this matter.
I have weak ankles, the result of old injuries and ignoring warnings from medical professionals. I am on the path towards remedying this but I still suffer twists and sprains every so often. I recover from these with resilience and composure. When I twist and fall, I get back up. I stand until I can move, whether it’s a manageable limp or slow walk. I do that until I can move normally. I don’t bemoan the situation, seek pity or use it as an excuse for laziness. I soldier on, as the saying goes. I have to.
Sometimes things don’t go according to plan. Sometimes I fail, scarcely missing victory or at times I barely even approach it. Incorrect methodology, lack of power or a mere poor stroke of chance is all it takes to success to elude me or you. The smart person will recover, learning what lessons there are to be learnt, laying the foundations towards greater success. Conflict is a powerful way to grow because we have things to overcome. Failure is merely something else that we cannot let get the better of us.
In times of failure, our recovery is paramount. The true defeat would be allowing a moment of loss to to take its toll on your strength, sapping your willpower and confidence. When outside forces or chance overcome you, it is a momentary failure, a lack of power. When you prevent yourself from succeeding, that is the worst kind of defeat. The self can be the greatest enemy of the self.
My boss is a firm believer in that a man can be judged by how he recovers from failure; whether he takes responsibility and fixes it, or attempts to shirk responsibility and lay the blame on others. His opinion of a person can change significantly if he sees a poor recovery. When anything bad happens on the job, he’ll say “It’s not how we fall, it’s how we get back up.” It’s a view I agree with.
Pain comes in many shapes and forms. Painful experiences aren’t always in our control. How we manage it is how we’re known and judged.
A Codex Entry from Force Realism.
In the Star Wars setting, Jedi wear simple clothing in humble browns and tans. To us, anyone wearing such garb is instantly a Jedi, but only one thing really symbolises the Jedi within the setting; the Lightsaber. The Lightsaber, called so even when used by a Dark Jedi or Sith, is basically a laser sword. A sword of light, when used by Jedi, wielding for the purpose of upholding truth, justice and peace in the galaxy. Each Jedi had to craft their own, though they were given basic blueprints for the initial contruction but later they would personalise them. The Lightsaber in the hands of a Jedi represents all they uphold.
In the modern realist tradition, a lightsaber of a kind still exists; the illumination of the mind. We wield it against the chaos and the shroud of ignorance, as well as whatever inner demons may plague us. The mind is a blade, some allow theirs to dull and rust, others keep theirs keen. To a Jedi, a Lightsaber is a symbol of devotion and justice; a tool and weapon. To a Realist, the mind is the same. Our tool, and sometimes weapon, to illuminate in times of darkness, kept keen by study and strengthened by faith. It can be the marker of a Realist; a symbol of the philosophy we study and the willingness to put it to action.
The Codex Chaplain is a goal of mine, one that has changed with me as I’ve grown. Originally it was merely to be a book filled with quotations and poetry, which is fine enough. Then this began, and I thought it should have more. Part of the Stygian Traveller and the Quest for Power is the completion of the Codex Chaplain. My intent is to add in portions of the philosophy, psychology and mythology I’m exploring as well as the poetry and quotations.
For example, passages from the Bhagavad Gita will be transcribed into the Codex, because that work has some very interesting ideas and quotations available. In fact, the ‘for I am become Death, destroyer of worlds‘ quotation originates there, believe it or not. There’ll be a significant fine print to it to if it was to ever go for publication, as I’ll be taking from fictional sources, because I believe that in fiction we can learn lessons. It doesn’t matter if an ideal of ours comes from from Star Wars or The X-Men. If you can derive lessons from it that’ll make you a better person, then good on you.
That is part of what I’m doing here, and it’s why I’ve become so absorbed by the Force Realists. I and they are merely people seeking new interpretations from fiction, philosophy and mythology that has no place in the present reality. Taking pieces from the sources and using them for modern ideals. The Asatru have very fine ideas, such as courage, loyalty and honour, but taking a stance against cutting your own hair because that’s the mark of an owned man? I don’t think so.
This is my pet project that’ll take me years and countless amounts of hair-pulling and reading, but ultimately I think it’ll be worth it. It may also contain a section for what I write here and other places. I imagine it as a weighty, leather-bound tome, written in ink. It’ll most likely be printed off my computer into a cheap notebook, but the leather tome part is just one of the goals.