The great philosopher Confucius said
Wisdom, compassion, and courage are the three universally recognized moral qualities of men. -Confucius
We have talked about wisdom and compassion in previous #SpiritChat discussions. So perhaps, it is time we discussed the concept of courage. What is courage? The thesaurus has a lot of definitions for courage. A few of them are
bravery, courageousness, pluck, pluckiness, valour, fearlessness, intrepidity, nerve, daring, audacity, boldness, grit, hardihood, heroism, gallantry
The question of ‘true courage’ has perplexed philosopher’s over the ages as far back as Socrates and Plato. The essay titled Laches is an extensive discussion of courage between Socrates and his students. One of his students defines courage as
Courage is the knowledge of future evils and goods – Nicias
Socrates responds that the student has in essence defined the nature of all virtue – not just courage. The discussion of these philosophers ends inconclusively, as Socrates concludes that
We all have much to learn about courage! – Socrates
One possible definition of courage is an absence of fear. The subject of fear often comes up in a lot of online discussion because fear has the ability to affect a lot of areas of our lives, including our spiritual growth. But is courage enough to overcome fear, so we may continue to walk forward in our spiritual journey? Or do we need something more than courage?
A few months ago, I had a conversation about courage with my daughter. She described courage as teamwork – the ability to help others overcome their fears. I had never conceived of courage in that way – but children can give us some unique perspectives on life. What do you think? Does courage involve teamwork? Or is it more of an individual quality?
So, let us connect and discuss the quality of moral courage and it’s role in our spiritual growth. How does courage help us on our path? Where does courage really come from? What weakens or strengthens our inner courage? Can we help others to grow their inner courage?
I invite you to join us in our weekly #SpiritChat discussion to share your thoughts on “Courage and the Spirit”. Sunday, May 6th at 9am ET / 1pm GMT. Thank you.
P.S. Please add your thoughts on courage in the comments. We would love to hear from you.
Update: Here is the transcript http://bit.ly/sc-tr-0506 – thank you to all who shared in the discussion!