In the inaugural edition of 3 Things, we said there would be times when we would not be talking about finance and numbers, etc. Today's edition is one of those occasions.
The Meaning Of Christmas
In A Christmas Carol, his classic story written in 1843, Charles Dickens explained to us, through the evolution of his main character, Ebeneezer Scrooge, what he thought the meaning of Christmas was in a way that was both powerful and entertaining
In 1889, a writer for The American Magazine, who appears to have read Dickens' work, put it this way:
"To give up one's very self – to think only of others – how to bring the greatest happiness to others – that is the true meaning of Christmas."
Pogo's punchline is a great reminder, if you can stomach the results of the honest self-examination it suggests, that we as individuals bear responsibility for the circumstances of our lives. But that’s a tough exam to take. So it comes as no surprise that many of us prefer to retreat to the comfort and supposed safety of an aggrieved group that has identified someone or something as having caused us undue harm. From there we petition the powers that be, who stand ready to share in our pain and "fight" with us against the declared enemy, to provide a remedy that appropriately addresses our grievances. The problem is that time we spend trying to conquer them keeps us from ever truly equipping ourselves to vanquish the real enemy. Pogo was right. The real enemy is us, as individuals. Our unwillingness to point the finger at ourselves and keep it fixed there when looking for solutions to our problems is a greater impediment to our individual progress than any of the external factors that are commonly assigned the blame.
It's been said that the hardest thing to change is your mind. That is true, but everything gets easier after that.
Just A Thought
"Human behavior flows from three main sources, desire, emotion, and knowledge." - Plato