Once upon a time, but not so long ago, in 1904, George Livingston Richards Co. called a poem contest, in Boston Massachusetts. The task was simple yet intriguing: What is success? In 100 words or less!
Many took upon to the task and beautiful and wise words were sent in. Success in life has countless views, it matters who you ask and it matters who answers. The judges all agreed that Bessie, a 25 years young woman, succeeded in wording a best answer to gift to all:
“He achieved success:
Who has lived well, laughed often, and loved much;
Who has enjoyed the trust of pure women, the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children;
Who has filled his niche and accomplished his task;
Who has never lacked appreciation of Earth’s beauty or failed to express it;
Who has left the world better than he found it;
Whether an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul;
Who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had;
Whose life was an inspiration;
Whose memory a benediction.”
The original author, Bessie Anderson Stanley (born in Newton on March 25, 1879 – died in Lincoln on October 2, 1952) was born Caroline Elizabeth Anderson. She married Arthur Jehu Stanley in 1900 and lived thereafter in Lincoln, Kansas. The verse is inscribed on her gravestone in Lincoln Cemetery, Kansas. There are various versions of this poem circulating the world and many have misattributed the poem or a very similar version to Waldorf Emmerson, however, this has been disputed and proved wrong over and over by various critics, confirming again and again the original author being Bessie Anderson Stanley.
This poem, however simple it is, contains a great deal of wisdom that it is not the tangible and material achievements that make one successful but rather the intangible and hard to quantify virtues and quality of one’s life. Because, how do you quantify laughter, trust, appreciation, inspiration? The scientific world requires a constant stream of precise weighing factors to stamp any hypothesis as true or false. The quantitative research results are taken seriously while the qualitative research results are brushed to a secondary and inferior place.
It is my aim and highest goal to contribute to and strengthen the qualitative research body on spiritual holistic healing. The body can not function optimally without a healthy mind and a harmonious soul feeling at peace. It is a continuous loop, and one influences the other without knowing which one started the process. However, we know that when something is off in any of our human being parts, be it in the body, the mind or the soul, the circle is interrupted and the flow is stopped. The expression of that discontinuation in flow is expressed to the exterior as sickness and illness. Our body may get sick and our mind may get stuck in dark thoughts making our souls light smaller and smaller.
I aim to make the the intangible more tangible and integrate health care to address all parts of us human beings. We are not just cells that respond to a genetic code that nobody knows how it is triggered to function or stop functioning. We are also energy. After all, at the micro level, cells are made of chemical compounds and substances, that are in turn made of atoms, which are made of protons and electrons. In short, we are energy, with positive and negative polarities. We are forever moving, changing and re-shaping. Our expression at macro level, or that of the visible and more tangible experiences, is in the quality of our emotions and feelings.
And what does this all have to do with the definition of success? Everything! Every single line is my motto in life. Living a life where I assist others in creating a balanced life physically, emotionally, and spiritually is my dream of success, for myself, for my daughter and for all humanity.
May you have success in all your endeavors and thank you for joining me on this journey.
With Love, In Light, For Peace,