Do you have the courage to live the dream? Your dream? Or is it okay with you to live crisis-to-crisis, to muddle through your one brief existence reacting to the ups and downs as you find them?
Never Truly Lived
You’ve probably heard about elderly people who look back from the final stretch and regret the risks that they did not more often that the risks that they did take. Regret the dreams they they put on hold. Forever.
Really. It sucks the joy out of your soul, the spring out of your step, the optimism out of your will, the air out of you lungs.
To live with regret in lieu of risks won and lost is to live only a small part of the full, rich existence available to each of us. But it takes courage to embrace dreams—even risky dreams—in pursuit of a bigger, more meaningful, more rewarding, more vigorous life.
“Do you have the courage to grab the dream that picked you?” — Prince Ea
Do I have the courage to truly live? It’s a big question. I affirm again and again that I have the courage, that I am truly living. But there’s a reason that the question must be answered again and again. Life’s like that. After every mountain range, another. Or a deep, dark canyon. Or a rushing river. Or a wide salty sea. Sometimes my courage falters. Sometimes I fail. But I’ve learned to reaffirm and try again. And I’ll continue to learn for as long as I live.
The second way Prince Ea’s question resonated for me hinges upon the idea of dreams picking us (rather than the other way around.)
“Martin Luther King, that man never had a dream. That dream had him. See, people don’t choose dreams. Dreams choose them.” — Prince Ea
This is a fascinating idea. Appealing too, even if it’s a bit overreaching. This sort of claim inevitably falls into the realm of destiny and callings and bigger-than-me, meta designs for my life. And honestly, I get a little uncomfortable in this realm. I’m more comfortable rooting my beliefs in the empirical realm.
Nevertheless the possibility that our dreams pick us is worth pondering. It’s quite an intoxicating notion, right? And who can prove otherwise?
I’ve often conceded that that our fleeting moments when we get to glimpse the “the big picture”, hear the singing underneath, find pure poetry in our own experience. These are ephemeral but very real encounters with something bigger and more magnificent than ourselves.
Perhaps these are the times that our dreams are trying to pick us?
Here’s Prince Ea’s video.
I admit that I’ve watched this video a half dozen times. And I still love it. He talks big. Really big!
“Sometimes you gotta leap and grow your wings on the way down.” — Prince Ea
Not the wisest advice in all situations, but there’s no question that sometimes we need to dive in before we can discover what growth, tools, etc. we will need. It’s risky. But twenty-twenty hindsight teaches us that it’s valuable. It’s critical if we wish to grow and learn and love and explore and create.
Do you have the courage to live the dream?
PS: If you’d rather listen to Prince Ea, here’s the audio only version.