25. Knowledge

Civilisation does not consist in commercial prosperity, or even in a fine service of express trains. It resides in quick apprehension, lively interest, eager sympathy . . . at least I suspect so.


    — Benson, Joyous Gard, Knowledge





I believe that the wellspring of human endeavor is interest. Without the desire to know, man is left intellectually bankrupt and spiritless.


I realize that these are pretty strong words, but I hold them to be true. Even writing them, I feel convicted and warned by the thought of a lethargic and uncaring mind. In my opinion, the above quote from the book Joyous Gard means that certain life-giving features of individual minds acting collectively underlie all of the advancement of civilization – features such as quick apprehension, lively interest, and eager sympathy, for example.


When at times I have little interest in things, or when tomorrow seems only a burden, I realize that my paths to Joyous Gard need attention. I know that my primary aim and intention must be to restore earlier visions of beauty.


I’ll be the first to admit, however, that it is hard to begin the process of restoration when my spirit is troubled or low. In such a state of mind, I find that I must rely on the inner belief that feelings of purpose and self-importance are best restored indirectly, by means of repeatedly proving success and essentially “getting my hands dirty.”


I begin by putting myself on a daily regimen to work through a series of tasks. Tackling them one by one seems to edify my spirit and convince me that once again I am able to succeed. As my confidence improves, I’ll begin to take on small projects, helping myself to further see that I’m able to accomplish something that requires a diversity of efforts.


Day 25 Guide


How do you restore your vision of beauty? What helps you to clear the paths to Joyous Gard? Take some time today, maybe at the end of the day, to jot down the things that help to restore your personal confidence and sense of purpose. These will be the defining sketches of your roadmap to beauty.


© 2005, Levi Hill

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