Ancient Greece is generally considered to be the cradle of Western civilization. From philosophy and art to science and technology, medicine, sports and architecture. Heck - they even had indoor plumbing! No wonder we find them so illuminating, though obviously, they didn't always have their, um... act together or they would still be here, right? But they were pretty cool while they were around. So cool, in fact, that in many ways we still try to emulate them today. Here is one of their best lessons.
Life is short. We only get so many years to make the most of it because who knows when a mountain is gonna rain down its thunder and wipe us right out. Remember, the goal while we're on this planet isn't to stay here forever. If that were the case, then everyone who has ever lived is a total failure! The real goal is to leave our mark. Ancient Greece has shown us a lot about that.*
The key to success, happiness, fulfillment and longevity is to LIVE WELL. To employ our gifts to their fullest. To find and follow our muse.
The Roman scholar Varro stated that there are only three Muses: one born from water (Practice), another the air (Memory), and a third from the human voice (Song). But Greek mythology claims three times as many Muses. There is a reason why (besides the fact that it is my favorite number, squared). The Greeks believed it took nine days to fall from heaven to earth, and nine more to fall into the underworld. The Land of Nine, in other words, is where we are right now. Today, that is a pretty complicated place. While the Muses of Greek mythology had to do mainly with the Arts, modern day muses must inspire us in a variety of endeavors.
Finding your muse requires self awareness. What are your interests, your talents? What brings you joy? What comes naturally and benefits not only yourself, but those around you? Inspiration, if we look inward, already resides with us in the form of our uniquity. We come with a purpose - seeds, if you will - and it is up to us to nurture that potential into fruition. We don't have to do it alone; indeed, we cannot. We need all that each of us has to offer. We grow - or languish - together.
Lest we go the way of the ancient Greeks without leaving a laudable mark, finding our muses has never been more important.
Are you looking for yours? Have you already found it?
*Yes, the Greeks were into that whole slavery thing; I never said they were perfect!
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