BIG FISH PICTURE
I stand 6 ft tall, the exact length of this ancient fish. It was actually too big to keep. As we watched that giant fish regain its strength and slowly disappear back into the depths of the Columbia it got me thinking about catching oneself. Plato said "The first and greatest victory is to conquer yourself; to be conquered by yourself is of all things most shameful and vile." Mastering oneself is probably the greatest catch of all. When i got back from the fishing trip, my cousin, having heard the story of catching a 6ft sturgeon, suggested i read The Alchemist. So i did. If you haven't read it, read it."
"Remember that wherever your heart is, there you will find your treasure."
― Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist
In Moby Dick, Ahab was consumed with his white whale. "...and Ahab piled upon the whale’s white hump the sum of all his rage. If his chest had been a cannon, he would have fired his heart upon it." Am i in pursuit of myself like that? All in. Is it everything?
“Success” is all too often assumed to be the indicator of someone's value. But success, in and of itself, merely speaks to a particular status and has nothing to do with the journey that it took to get there, or whether or not our integrity was retained along the way. That idea makes The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway’s classic novel, so profound.
What does it profit someone if they gain the whole world, yet forfeit there soul. I think living outside of ourselves, living for others can become the only motivation we need to master ourselves, and our vices. We all have demons. Yours probably look different then mine, but the fight is the same... and the motivation can be the same as well: Those around us. Those we love the most. What is success? Is it more stuff? Big house? Extra car in the garage? At what cost? Maybe success looks more like depth of relationship, depth of life, slowing down a little bit, turning a few things off and maybe real conversations with people we care about over an amazing meal of vegetables from your garden and some fresh caught fish, slowly cooked to perfection.