We decide which is right and which is an illusion.

Archive for July 12, 2012

Optimism

‘A word about my personal philosophy. It is anchored in optimism. It must be for optimism brings with it hope, a future with a purpose, and therefore a will to fight for a better world. Without this optimism, there is no reason to carry on. If we think of the struggle as a climb up a mountain then we must visualize a mountain with no top. We see a top but when we finally reach it, the overcast rises and we find ourselves merely on a bluff. The mountain continues on up. Now we see the real top ahead of us and strive for it only to find we’ve reached another bluff–the top still above us. And so it goes on, interminably.’

‘Knowing that the mountain has no top, that it is a perpetual quest from plateau to plateau, the question arises, ‘Why the struggle, the conflict, the heartbreak, the danger, the sacrifice? Why the constant climb?’ Our answer is the same as that which a real mountain climber gives when he is asked why he does what he does. ‘Because it’s there.’ Because life is there ahead of you and either one tests oneself in its challenges or huddles in the valleys of a dreamless day-to-day existence whose only purpose is the preservation of a illusory security and safety. The latter is what the vast majority of people choose to do, fearing the adventure into the unknown. Paradoxically they give up the dream of what may lie ahead on the heights of tomorrow for a perpetual nightmare–an endless succession of days fearing the loss of a tenuous security.’

Saul Alinsky
Author of Rules For Radicals
American Community Organizer