• darachduffy

Rediscover Your Inner Child

Boldness is in part promoted by the act of becoming more childlike, by regaining our capacity for wonder, curiosity and most importantly play.

Heraclitus said 'Those who approach life like a child playing a game, moving and pushing pieces, possess the power of Kings'

Unlike the normal adult who is dead inside and who consumes junk food drugs alcohol and mindless entertainment in the frantic search to feel alive it is natural for the psychologically healthy child to see the dawning of each new day as a new adventure and to feel as if exciting discoveries beckon and continually lie in wait.

Children instinctively rebel against monotony and boredom like Don Quixote they go searching for adventures.

'A man's maturity is to have regained the innocence of a child at play' wrote Nietzsche.

Along with cultivating boldness to turn our life into a quest we also need to determine the values ideals and types of adventures that will define our existence. One of the more obvious options is to leave the security of our home and with the mindset and values of an explorer, venture forth into the great unknown. The active traveler goes strenuously in search of people, of adventure, of experience.

The tourist is passive. He expects interesting things to happen to him. Becoming a world traveler however is not a viable option for all. Financial constraints coupled with government tyranny and commitments to family and a career can limit the degree to which we can travel. Fortunately we do not need to physically leave home to turn our life into a quest as we can also go on a quest that takes us into the unexplored realms of our mind and one of the ways to do this is to orient our life around the pursuit of knowledge.

In devoting his life to a quest for knowledge Nietzsche found the Ariadne thread that not only saved his life but infused it with purpose excitement and joy.

'No life has not disappointed me' he wrote 'on the contrary I find it richer more desirable and mysterious every year ever since the day when the great liberator came to me, the idea that life could be an experiment of the seeker of knowledge and not a duty, not a calamity not a trickery and a knowledge itself let it be something else for others for example a bed to rest on or a diversion or a form of leisure for me it is a world of dangers and victories in which heroic feelings to find places to dance and play. Life as a means to knowledge with this principle in one's heart one can live not only boldly but even joyfully and laughs joyfully too, questing for knowledge is valuable for its own sake.'

'Knowledge is the food of the soul' Plato has Socrates say when asked whether it is better to be born or not to be born. The pre-socratic Greek philosopher Anaxagoras replied that being born is better because it grants one the opportunity to study the heavens and the whole universe but devoting our life to a quest for knowledge while valuable for its own sake is made more valuable by the secondary benefits that confers one of which is that it helps us escape mediocrity and to become a better human being.

Knowledge and wisdom are not correlated, but the mindset of constantly searching for knowledge is wisdom. This mindset is childlike curiosity. Leonardo Da Vinci lived his whole life like a curious child. We love Leonardo.

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