Neil Tambe

I'm a Detroiter who happens to enjoy writing, national parks, orange juice, the performing arts, and fanciful socks. More than anything though, I aspire to be a good husband, father, and citizen.

define: courage - Google Search

define: courage - Google Search

I will try to make it through this post. My arm still is sore, but I miss the freedom that comes with writing. And, it's been a tumultous time since I've last written; quite a hella hard week. Life seems to simplify, only as a prerequisite to getting complicated again. But, alas we live longer and learn more. And...find more courage.

Courage seems to be a pretty shifty topic. I thought I had a handle on it, but it would appear as though i have a better idea now.

Courage: Doing what you should do despite the opposition you may recieve. It's the tenacity of running into oncoming danger. Facing difficult odds, and then performing an act, despite it. It's that intense eyed glare when starting down an opponent across the line of scrimmage, or attending a funeral of a loved one when you know you'll be a wreck. It's the 'i can do this, i can do this' you say internally when attempting something new. Courage, is focus.

I have long lived by this definition of courage, and have found it to be rather satisfactory. It has never steered me in the wrong direction. It is what one would want courage to be, the ability to co-exist and marginalize the effects that fear creates. It's the "I'm scared, but I'm tough mentality." It's something that is easy to relate to, everyone has fear, so everyone can have courage if you face your fear.

So then, by this definition, courage is accessible...and having fear is not only allowable, but necessary. it's a sexy courage, that is able to be worked towards.

Then a few minutes ago, I finally understood the next level of courage. It had been ciricling in my thoughts for probably a good year. It feels good to get it out.

Here's my beef with the old way. It's to vain, which seems impure to me. Let me explain.

The old definition of courage is dependant on the coexistence of fear and courage, so courage is not a state of being that can happen in its own right--you need fear to be courageous. You need situational context to be courageous.

My gut tells me that an abstract topic like courage needs to not be dependant on anything else to be courage. Courage ought to be something from within, instead of something that arises on a case-by-case basis.

I think for the truly courageous this concept of "fear" doesn't even exist. I think they just do, there is no second guessing or anxiety, or fear, they just go out there and do it.

If they need to make a clutch free thorow, they automatically remove themselves from the situation and make the free throw. To them--the courageous--it's not a clutch free throw, it's just a free throw. I'm begging to see courage as almost dispassionate at its core. It's not only complete acceptance of the world, but it's a step up, it's choosing the world you live in, in a completely honest way.

To me now, this is what courage is, this is what I'm strving for. A world where the effects of fear are overwhelmingly outweighed by strength, but a state of peace where strength is not necessary because fear is inconcieveable.

Steps of development, as I see them:

Co-existence of fear and strength,
Supression of Fear
Full mitigation of fear; strength completely outweighs fear,
Removal of fear
Impossibility and inconcieveability of fear. (Courage)