A Fable Is An Animal Tale That Has No Purpose Endurance Leads to Success

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Endurance Leads to Success

One of the greatest virtues of all successful people is the ability to persevere. Many of you may have learned this as perseverance, but I use the word persistence more. What is the difference? Well, perseverance means a constant struggle forward against opposition, while endurance is, well, endurance. With endurance there is no need to fight forward. Sometimes it even means moving backwards, away from your goals. This does not mean that you give up – you are simply waiting for the optimal or most suitable time to take action.

There is an old tale by Chuang Tzu, who was a philosopher in ancient China about 2,200 years ago, that illustrates the magic of perseverance. It starts with a fish called Kun. Now, this fish is not just any ordinary fish. It is thousands of meters long. Kun evolves into Pung, which is a huge bird, thousands of meters wide. Don’t ask me why. For Pung, success means flying south over the great sea to the Heavenly Pool. Quite an easy task, don’t you think? Well! First, Pung flaps his wings furiously and rises to a height of ninety thousand kilometers. It takes him 6 months to do this. Only then can he begin his journey south to the Heavenly Pool with nothing in his way.

A boat cannot float if the water is too shallow. Empty a cup of water on the floor and you may get a straw to float in the water, but the cup will sink. Similarly, if there is not enough wind, it cannot maintain large wings. Only when Pung is ninety thousand kilometers high can the wind support him.

When the cicada heard this story, he said to the pigeon: “When I want to climb the elf, I fly and try to reach higher ground. Sometimes I miss and fall to the ground, but slowly and surely I make progress. Why must Pung travel thousands of kilometers without making any noticeable progress? The pigeon agreed: Pung was a fool. And so did every other animal in the kingdom.

So here it is. Pung’s fable. I hope you get the moral of the story because it captures the essence of resilience. If you don’t, read on. I have identified two pearls of wisdom in this story:

1. When a person wants to have a short cruise around the bay in his sailboat, he will need to pack enough food for a few hours. When a person wants to have an epic journey across the Pacific Ocean, they will need to pack enough food for several months. If you aim for a big achievement in life, you need extensive preparation. This doesn’t just mean gathering enough resources; it also involves waiting for the right time to act.

2. When you prepare for your epic journey in life, you will be criticized. That is why you must be true to your convictions and believe that, in the end, you will get what you set out for. And you will. Only then can you brush off criticism easily and endure criticism because you know you are a Pung bird and others, well, not Pung birds.

That’s it for today.

happy life,

Set

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