John Y’s Musings from the Middle: Never Give Up

A story borrowed from Jason Brangers.

I’m calling it, “Now you’ve got my attention.”

One of my Russian martial art coaches loved chess; which may be more of a national sport than Sambo.

Often he’d see me worried about the size, strength or speed of my opponents, and he’d recount an old proverb, “After the game, the king and… the pawn go into the same box.”

He had once continued, “You have anxiety because you are getting sucked down into the mere game. Look from the top. imagine you are pieces on a chessboard. Your pawn only weakens because you feel small next to his front, and so you feel anxiety about your lack of potential. But now view it from the top, see your pawn in its full strength, what it represents to your opponent, and realize it is the most important piece on the board.”

He taught me that my pawn could have the greatest courage and cause the entire opposition to rattle. If I remained brave enough to approach the opponent’s rear line, even a pawn could transform into the most powerful piece on the board: a queen. “Even the humble, unexpected pawn can change the course of a game,” he’d insist.

So what are you going to do in this game? If all you are doing is going back into the box, if you can’t take it with you, then HOW you play the game remains the only point to this all.

Your true powers exceed the movements you may feel restricted to execute. Your importance lies not in your potential powers, but by your very courage. So, how you choose to stand, how you decide you will act while you are on the board, is the entire point of our game. Even the humble, unexpected pawn can change the course of the game through bravery. None of us are getting out of here alive, so let us enjoy the game, but more importantly, let us not be deluded into collecting pieces or wins.

Let us focus our goals upon the courage to follow our values even against overwhelming odds, even with those who have become blind to the point of he game, and the inevitability that we will all go back in the box.

Very respectfully, Scott Sonnon


Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>




The Recovering Politician Bookstore


The RP on The Daily Show

John Y’s Links: