A hero is born among a hundred, a wise man is found among a thousand, but an accomplished one might not be found even among a hundred thousand men.
‒ Plato, Greek philosopher
Is the winner who has conquered the whole world, as it seems to us, really a hero?
Once upon a time, a young man who was at the beginning of his career said that he wasn’t sure if he will be able to “cope with victory” if he won. But in fact, that was only a small omission in his childhood which was allowed either by his parents or his teachers. The young man thought that victory is a success and, thus, considered that conquering the whole world is a success.
If adults have spoken about victory, success, and personal happiness with enthusiasm and a particular thrill while we were children, they have made a fatal mistake! They have consequently singled us out of the winning ranks as people who think of themselves as insufficiently special or authentic to conquer the world. The mere fact that people are divided into winners and those who applaud the said winners is actually fear of one’s own feat on the ladder of success. Cocooning, restraining our talent, and comparing with heroes from our field make us feel reluctant to create the maxims of our splendid personalities who view victory as something quite ordinary.
Does victory really exist? Is victory something that can change the quality of our lives, something that can change our personalities or something that can change our attitude towards people and the whole world? Which of these answers is the most important one?
Victory as such does not exist. Victory is only a solution that at the given moment proved to be an interesting enough set of circumstances which we used in a smarter way than the opponent we supposedly outmatched. However, the one we call “defeated” is actually the ace up our sleeve that helped us achieve what we did. The “defeated” participated in our victory more than we did! Absurd, isn’t it? But it’s true! A victory is, therefore, a justified act which is attributed to the one who fights for it, but it can’t be a status.
When we become heroes, the quality of our lives really changes. But a man gets used to that way of life very quickly and once again finds himself in the same place where he was before he became a hero. That can be checked by the simplest rhetorical questions such as: Am I happy now? Is a person who loves me by my side? Am I laughing more than before?
However, if victory manages to change our personality at a level where spirituality turns into a quest to understand one’s life achievement, then we can consider ourselves people who are on the way to become one of those that Plato could count on the fingers of one hand.
As long as everything comes down only to fame, applause, and popularity, we will be thrown into the illusion of ourselves as winners. If our desire to win is inspired by the desire for fame or material wealth which will change the quality of our lives, we cannot hope that our “straight path of happiness” will finally start rising! We can consider ourselves heroes only when we forget the importance of our success in front of the world! Only when our talent begins living for the sake of achieving higher goals which will enable us to change the world for the better ‒ only then will our uniqueness make us winners.
A hero is born among a hundred, a wise man is found among a thousand, but an accomplished one might not be found even among a hundred thousand men.
In Tuscany, the most beautiful region of Italy, there’s a curious bridge with a house on it. The bridge’s mystery can’t immediately be appreciated, unlike its shape, since the whole world’s heard about its form, and what the whole world knows is no longer a mystery. However, it does carry deep inside a hidden secret, which has nothing to do with its construction, its shape, the people who built it or the time it comes from. The mystery concerns the bridge itself.
Its magnificence extends over the narrowest part of the Arno River, and its soul is alive just like the water flowing under it. Its soul knows that magnificence has nothing to do with size, history or outward appearance, and it proudly welcomes people from distant countries.
It is believed that the bridge existed even in the time of ancient Rome, though the city where it is today isn’t called Rome, but Florence. Ponte Vecchio, the Old Bridge, the bridge with a house on it… Connecting roads since ancient times, it has suffered many floods, accidents and reconstructions. They say that it acquired its present shape in the fourteenth century, and that the first stalls appeared on it in the thirteenth. Those were the years when its soul was just breaking through, and it fought for its place in human time. The time when, due to excessive fear of hunger, people didn’t believe that even living rivers could have a soul, or that the same river under the Old Bridge churned debris every day from tanning-yards, butchers’ and fishmongers’ shops. Yet those shops, like all other forces characterized as bad, had their converse, positive side. They became houses and many among them, spiky over the water, turned into permanent places of residence. Thus, the surface of the bridge took on the appearance of a house. And nobody asked whether the bridge wanted a house on it.
Its appearance wasn’t as important as its power to support the souls of the fortunate and unfortunate people who passed over it, or survived thanks to it. Some of them became rich and some, when they went bankrupt, were beaten by soldiers who destroyed their shops. Such people said goodbye to the bridge, but they knew that it would always carry their stories and sadness, and they visited it later with joy so that it could remind them of something they themselves were afraid to remember. Despite the dread memories, those people knew why they were coming back. The bridge carried their wisdom and the wisdom of other people who had left their lives on it, and it could teach them something.
According to history, traders were expelled from the bridge in the sixteenth century and small jewellers took their place. Despite these events, the bridge, even in those times, cared nothing for what was happening on the surface; it was important for itself, mostly because of the great secret it carried. The waters of the Arno River rose often and assailed its height, but the bridge was indifferent even then. People would walk over the bridge again after repairs, and only that was important, since that fact kept it alive. Even if the river won and it crumbled, the Old Bridge knew that someone would rebuild or repair it simply because its place has always been there, over the narrowest part of the river. And even if it completely disappeared, the idea of the bridge would live forever, and nobody could erase that from the face of the earth!
Once, when the river rose more than six meters, the jewellery shops were flooded and the gold disappeared under the bridge, just as wealth vanishes after a man’s demise, for when he no longer exists it isn’t his any more. The bridge remained, renovated, but strong. And the house on it? The house changed, it was repaired and torn down, for some it was useful and for others it was a hindrance, but above all it was just a house whose entire existence depended on the bridge, which lived with its secret.
Nonetheless, the secret of the bridge was so simple that it was discovered many times before this modern age, and even now many can reveal it. It is manifested in the minds of all those who are on the bridge at this moment, because people create their own worlds every day from nothing, and that’s why it reveals itself differently every time. But those who want to access the world of that secret completely must remember one thing: while passing the Old Bridge they mustn’t remain indifferent, for indifference kills the secret!
(from the book “Secret of a bridge”)
“Suppose that an energy exists above the mind and controls it. This energy is part of the absolute mind in which all our lives are recorded. Rising through that energy, looking downward, we can behold an incredible view: our own lives. If man could only learn how to use his place in that absolute mind, filled with information from the past, everything that exists and has been lived through, he would be omnipotent.”
from the book “ENSO”
Somewhere in the far West, before the Europeans brought love as a commandment and cornered her natural law, it was believed that man is destined to live with a free spirit, instead of with the spirit trapped within him. People, thanks to obedience to the free spirit, could foresee not only their fate, but also every game played by nature. There is a belief that people didn’t even sleep in those times! They were awake day and night, performing everyday tasks in unlimited space and time. One night they discovered that they had a closer connection with their spirits when they kept their eyes closed, but still continued to live life. This life, which ran its course while their eyes were closed, we now call sleep. They were sure that the one who rules his dreams knows that his life is an inseparable half of the whole.
At that time, while in the West such beliefs took root in people’s blood like a plague, in the East of the planet tales of wisdom were born, which thanks to so-called deliberate time became legends for some. Yet, those from the East believed in their legends and turned them into a series of wise disciplines that fed the people spiritually for centuries. Many of these are preserved to this day and are practiced in various parts of the world, but many have been lost or cast aside in the face of the paths people have deliberately chosen. Today we speak about the lost disciplines in the way we would of legends, but there exists a handful of people who practice these to this day, helping their soulmates to fathom the truth of their own inner power.
One such legend relates that in southwest China one self-discipline existed, called the discipline of sages, which could make a man omnipotent. Such a man saw although he could not see, heard though he could not hear. He lived through his internal relations and views, not through the physical body, and therefore he became immortal. The knowledge meant becoming omnipotent, especially when used not only to help oneself, but others.
When the authorities found out about such a powerful discipline, they expelled the entire school from the country to preserve the distinction between worlds. This was the act of the government. One old wise man found the hidden chronicles and, to save them from total destruction, sent them far across pirate-controlled seas to the West. Centuries passed, and the discipline of the self lived and was taught across the whole world. Europeans and the Irish, Portuguese and Tunisians practiced it. Later, through the southernmost point in the world, it came to Central America. Several centuries later, the discipline gained world power. It spoke in the language of the world and humanity. It was powerful because it could make people of all races and colours happy, on all continents. However, there remained just a few who knew of it.
Later, these writings, via an unknown path, appeared in the hands of a famous guru, and he found himself in serious trouble with the authorities. Nevertheless, he sacrificed himself in the name of generations to come, fled to the East and secretly passed the self-discipline on, but only to those who needed help. One of his highly autodidactic descendants was called Denver.
There are millions of planets in the universe and one of them is called Earth. Beings who call themselves men gave it that name. They invented names, space, time, conditions and limitations. The only unlimited thing is the planet, which wanders in the universe, since people cannot control its floating. Free and alone, attacked by the occasional virus against which it must defend itself, the Earth lives longer than can be understood by those who believe they have utterly conquered it. People exist regardless of whether they are aware of it or not, either in a living or dead, organic or so-called inorganic form. Those who have a living form ‒ us, the people ‒ are visible, but those who’ve entered the realm of the dead can be seen only by the rare few, as a living movement or simple energy. Some people see with their eyes, but cannot see with their minds. They see only the material world in the time and space of their own internal structure, built by others. Their earthly awareness is an obstacle to true knowledge. On the other hand, people who see with their eyes, but give priority to observing with the mind, are those who attempt to see from above, and they are able to go beyond the limits and exceed the lower laws. Believe it or not, there are people who cannot see with their eyes, but bear witness with their minds. Such people can see the living and dead forms in all their colours, movements and strength. They surpass all boundaries, rules, space and time. They live in the eternity of the living energies that come from an empty and pure space, from which wonders occur. If these people could see with their eyes as well, they would have a divine nature.
Once upon a time in a village there lived a poor girl. She didn’t have nice clothes or jewellery, and she wasn’t satisfied with her appearance. She washed linen for a few wealthy families, and in turn they brought her food. Since she thought that she wasn’t pretty, people started to perceive her in that way. Young girls avoided her, young men passed her by. Days and years passed, and the girl was increasingly dissatisfied with her life in the crumbling hut. Even as the girl became a woman, no one asked for her hand in marriage. Days and years passed, and very quickly she began her transformation into an old woman.
One day, a wizard appeared in the village. As soon as she heard the news, the old woman went to him so as to assure herself of his powers. When he asked her why she had come, she said that she would like to have a wish fulfilled.
– I would like to have a big house and a garden full of fruit so that I might never be hungry and miserable again.
The wizard told her not to worry, and to return home. He could grant her such a small thing.
When she arrived, she found a villa with a beautiful garden instead of her hut. There were many fruits in the garden and a plentiful feast was served in the house.
Days and years again passed, and the woman grew used to having everything she needed, to the point that life became monotonous. Previously, she’d thought of her misery, but now she had nothing to dwell upon.
More time went by and the old lady decided to go back to the wizard to see if he could alter her life that little bit more.
– Why have you returned?
– I’d like you to fulfil one more wish for me.
– What? ‒ asked the wizard.
– I wish that instead of the villa, I could have a big castle, so that I might invite friends to dinner. And it wouldn’t hurt to have a couple of servants. I’m too old to take care of myself.
– Don’t worry. I’ll fulfil that wish if it will make you happy ‒ the wizard took pity on the elderly woman.
When the old woman returned, instead of the villa she found an enormous castle with a gleaming lake to the side, and woodlands all around. Servants with large trays laden with fruit awaited her at the entrance as her acquaintances walked down the paths, smiling like old friends. The old woman started to take pleasure in luxury and the company of others.
Days and years continued to pass. One day she looked in the mirror and realised that she’d aged even more. She realised that she did not care about anything any longer. She was alone and old, even within the walls of a large, luxurious castle.
Then it occurred to her that she could go to the wizard once more. Perhaps he would take pity on her in her old age again and fulfil her last wish.
– Why have you returned?
– I have one more wish, and I swear this will be the last.
– I can fulfil one more wish, but it will indeed be the last. I no longer have much power to fulfil wishes. I need to go back to the far-away mountains, and I’m getting ready for the journey. There, in peace, I will be able to restore the strength I need for my own life, long since spent fulfilling the wishes of others. And so, think carefully about your final wish.
– I want to be young again. Not as the girl I was in my youth, but as the most beautiful girl in the country. Then I will be a princess in my castle.
The miracle-worker felt sad that the old woman had lived her entire life without learning that appearances, riches and poverty were immaterial, but that the way we deal with these facts of life is important. Nevertheless, he resolved to grant her last wish.
While walking to her castle, she felt lighter. She looked at her hands and noticed her fingers becoming younger and longer. She took hold of her long silky hair and realesed that her wish had come true. She ran to her castle as quickly as her legs could carry her, to look at herself in the mirror. As she approached, instead of the castle she saw her old, small house, and through the window an empty table inside. Not even noticing the empty table, or the old house, she opened the door and stepped into her crumbling room. She stood in front of the rusty mirror and saw herself ‒ young and beautiful, just the way she had been in youth. Happily, she smiled at the thought of her bright future.
The legend of the young man with two hearts
Once upon a time, a blind boy was born in a village in the Far East. He had the good fortune to grow up in a family of augurs. From birth he was taught how to develop and use his other senses, instead of his eyes, and so to live life as others do. Since he was a child, he quickly mastered the skills and grew into a very capable young man. His hands were his eyes, his nose a measurer of risk. When he wanted to go out into the world, just like his young acquaintances, he asked for his father’s blessing. To send him into the world, his father found the oldest and most renowned sage, not only in their village but in the whole country, so as to teach his son the skills of life. The sage taught him for years and finally sent him out into the world, in the hope that his training would help the young man to develop his own senses and master the ancient wisdom.
Years passed and after time the young traveller would simply stop by for pieces of advice. On every occasion the sage admired his questions and successes. The young man became his best disciple and the sage promised him that one day, just before leaving the visible face of the earth, he would hand down to him all his power and treasures, as well as the title of most esteemed teacher, despite his blindness. The young man, being too young to rid himself of all the meaningless human desires, asked if he could use just a part of the treasure while the sage still lived.
The wise man loved his young disciple and thought him more capable than even he had been in his youth. Therefore, he promised to start giving him the treasure piece by piece when he turned thirty. Thirty years is the minimum necessary for making the right decisions, the sage said. But he would be able to use the funds only for assistance in handing down the ancient knowledge. The young man agreed. At the age of thirty, once again he set off into the world with some treasure in his pockets. For years he searched but couldn’t find a person who really needed help. When he returned to his native land, he found the sage’s abode deserted. That said, he did find a chest full of treasure and under it the message: “If you use this treasure to help others, you’ll receive the only thing missing in your life: absolute happiness.”
The young man thought that it was probably an elixir that could restore vision, and happily took the chest, intending to find a man in need of help as quickly as possible. Soon he met the most beautiful woman he had ever come across. A long time before, he had gained the capacity, even though he was blind, to feel the beauty of women. When he discovered that she too was blind ‒ he was sure it was a sign. He decided to help her as his parents and his old teacher had helped him. He resolved to teach her everything he had learned. A great deal of time passed before the young man noticed that the girl had begun to believe in the ancient wisdom and her own power. One night, when he was almost sure of her success, in his dream he saw a path to distant mountains. In the middle of the forest he came across a huge chest decorated with the most beautiful gems and gold that he had ever come across. The dream was so vivid that he was able to draw a map of the path on paper. When he awoke, he remembered the words of his wise teacher, that he would gain the most beautiful thing in the world if he used the treasure to help others. Therefore, the young man, realising that he had already become too attached to the girl and forgotten his own intentions, resolved to dismiss those feelings and follow the map from his dream, without even time to say goodbye. Three years of searching passed and he became even more confident that he was on the right path.
One spring, when peaches were already ripening and filling the air with the most beautiful colours he could imagine, the young man arrived at the place with the chest from his dream. He felt the chest with his fingers and opened it, and almost fainted from surprise. Inside, he found a living woman’s heart beating in the purest and most beautiful tones. He sat down and wept bitterly. He realised that he had readily given up love in order to find a treasure, not knowing that love was the only treasure he was missing. He remembered the old sage and sat for a long time in the distant woods, deep in thought, a young man with two hearts.
When you learn to read without the letters,
because a hearts's letter is written without them;
You'll learn to listen without superstition,
you'll understand the wisdom of the one who is silent.
When you help those who did not help you,
And you do not create a rival game
forgive the one who has not repented,
because forgiveness is a matter of your morality
When you praise the one who can not praise the other
and for this you have no ambiguous goal
do not talk about the worst
so you could raise your self-confidence
When you kiss the leper and do not feel bad,
because so his wound will become painless
Hug the homeless and let them all marvel
regretness is weak people's dark side
When you cheat to help those who are deceived,
Do not be ashamed yourself
Give what you've been collecting for years
but do not look for the benefit in that.
when you lose the most important in your life
Do not surrender to death as a sceptic
bless the one who stole from you
No one can steal what is intended.
Trust in more when you fall the lowest,
because it builds high from the low;
Achieve but keep dreaming,
because birth is just a new beginning.
When you swim in gold, don't measure yourself with others,
because the measuring is the virtue of envy;
Do not boast in your deeds,
in modesty is their strength.
When the Oscars and Nobel prizes are important to you,
Golden palms, lions and globes;
Do not let those confessions, delights and applause
mean everything to you.
When you supported all armless so that they could swim,
and sing with deaf people in front the whole world.
When you prove to lords that thay can love too
and give them your oath.
When you protect the sun shadow with a shade
give light to the brightness and darkness to the night
Treat everyone equally,
you'll know you left a clue on the Earth!
I was inspired to write my book by the most beautiful books by the British writer Jane Austen.
Jane Austen was a Georgian era author, best known for her social commentary in novels including ‘Sense and Sensibility,’ ‘Pride and Prejudice’ and ‘Emma.’
Jane Austen was born in Steventon, Hampshire, on 16 December 1775. She was born a month later than her parents expected; her father wrote of her arrival in a letter that her mother “certainly expected to have been brought to bed a month ago”.
In 1783, Austen and her sister Cassandra were sent to Oxford to be educated by Mrs Ann Cawley who took them with her to Southampton when she moved there later in the year. In the autumn both girls were sent home when they caught typhus and Austen nearly died.
When Austen penned First Impressions, the book that would become Pride and Prejudice, in 1797, a proud George took it to a London publisher named Thomas Cadell for review. From the age of eleven, and perhaps earlier, Austen wrote poems and stories for her own and her family’s amusement The remainder of her education came from reading, guided by her father and brothers James and Henry.
Austen was first identified in print following her death in 1817; her brother Henry wrote a eulogy to accompany the posthumous publications of Persuasion and Northanger Abbey.
n August 1792, aged seventeen, Austen started writing Catharine or the Bower, which presaged her mature work, especially Northanger Abbey; it was left unfinished and the story picked up in Lady Susan, which Todd describes as less prefiguring than Catharine.
When Austen was twenty, Tom Lefroy, a neighbour, visited Steventon from December 1795 to January 1796. He had just finished a university degree and was moving to London for training as a barrister. Lefroy and Austen would have been introduced at a ball or other neighbourhood social gathering, and it is clear from Austen’s letters to Cassandra that they spent considerable time together: “I am almost afraid to tell you how my Irish friend and I behaved. Imagine to yourself everything most profligate and shocking in the way of dancing and sitting down together.
After finishing Lady Susan, Austen began her first full-length novel Elinor and Marianne. Her sister remembered that it was read to the family “before 1796” and was told through a series of letters. Without surviving original manuscripts, there is no way to know how much of the original draft survived in the novel published anonymously in 1811 as Sense and Sensibility
Austen began a second novel, First Impressions (later published as Pride and Prejudice), in 1796. She completed the initial draft in August 1797, aged 21; as with all of her novels, Austen read the work aloud to her family as she was working on it and it became an “established favourite”. At this time, her father made the first attempt to publish one of her novels. In November 1797, George Austen wrote to Thomas Cadell, an established publisher in London, to ask if he would consider publishing First Impressions. Cadell returned Mr. Austen’s letter, marking it “Declined by Return of Post”. Austen may not have known of her father’s efforts. Following the completion of First Impressions, Austen returned to Elinor and Marianne and from November 1797 until mid-1798, revised it heavily; she eliminated the epistolary format in favour of third-person narration and produced something close to Sense and Sensibility. In 1797, Austen met her cousin (and future sister-in-law), Eliza de Feuillide, a French aristocrat whose first husband the Comte de Feuillide had been guillotined, causing her to flee to Britain, where she married Henry Austen. The description of the execution of the Comte de Feuillide related by his widow left Austen with an intense horror of the French Revolution that lasted for the rest of her life.
In 1804, while living in Bath, Austen started, but did not complete, her novel The Watsons. The story centres on an invalid and impoverished clergyman and his four unmarried daughters. Sutherland describes the novel as “a study in the harsh economic realities of dependent women’s lives”.
Austen learned that the Prince Regent admired her novels and kept a set at each of his residences. In November 1815, the Prince Regent’s librarian James Stanier Clarke invited Austen to visit the Prince’s London residence and hinted Austen should dedicate the forthcoming Emma to the Prince. Though Austen disliked the Prince Regent, she could scarcely refuse the request.
The reception history of Jane Austen follows a path from modest fame to wild popularity.
Jane Austen, the author of such works as Pride and Prejudice (1813) and Emma (1815), has become one of the best-known and most widely read novelists in the English language. Her novels are the subject of intense scholarly study and the centre of a diverse fan culture.