Thursday, August 06, 2009

Should Have Learned

I should have learned the last time I went up there that the stinging nettles are called stinging nettles because they STING!!!

I took a ride up behind camp again last night, still hoping to find that perfect loop in my "backyard". It didn't happen. What I did find though was a steep challenging course with lots of climbing, that seemingly goes up for a very long time, briefly drops down again, the climbs some more.

The thunder was still rumbling as I rolled out of the office. According to the weather map, the storm was moving out and the gray clouds and rain should be moving out soon. They did just that but not without a couple more strikes of lightning. About 15 minutes after hearing the last thunder, I passed two trees that had the bark peeled off, victims of lightning, the meat of the tree shining bright under the dark canopy of forest.

I kept riding watching for bears, dreaming of sweet singletrack and thinking about life.....

Approval: We all seek approval of some kind, and who we seek that approval from determines a lot of the direction that we live our life. If we seek approval for poor decisions, we will likely get that approval from others who make poor decisions. And vice versa, if we seek approval for good decisions, the lifestyles of those who approve, will likely indicate a lifestyle of good decisions.

I'm not saying that everything we do is done for the approval of others. But I have noticed that there is something in all of us that wants to hear someone say " well done", "good try", "Hey man, nice shot"....

But, what happens if we don't get that approval? And is approval from some people in our lives more important than others? And what is approval? What if I am doing something perfectly good and " approval worthy", not harming myself or others, and contributing to the good of mankind, but someone else sees it as a waste of time. What if my sacrifice to achieve a greater good is misunderstood by someone else as a waste of time?

I'm thinking that at that point it is time to stop seeking approval. Maybe we should fight the urge to seek approval in the first place, and simply do something because it is the right thing to do. Much in the way that we fight the urge NOT to do something because we are afraid of failure. Press on, do what is right, and not for the approval of mankind....

So, those thoughts consumed me last night on my ride. Good thoughts, good ride.

Have a great day


Chris said...

Too weird, I was having similar thoughts last night. And I realized that I seek approval from children, so it's all good.

You should check out a movie called "Amazing Grace" if you get the chance. Sort of a jumbled telling, but the themes are pretty awesome.

Anonymous said...

"Press on, do what is right, and not for the approval of mankind"

I get teased for "compulsively" picking up chunks of pallet wood at work. No matter - I will continue with my personal mission.

Back in the 80's, I saw a stack of glass jar green olive cartons tip over due to a small piece of wood lodging under a fork lift tire.

What a horrible mess! The driver was almost fired for it, as they assumed he braked too fast. I kept that wood and validated his innocence.

To this day - I hate the sight and smell of green olives.