Where Do We Stand?
So….It’s been an even longer while now. And what’s been happening?
As the new year starts it looks like school is going to be on the back burner for a while. I’m still interested in poetry but I’ve got more pressing matters and projects to attend to, and if anyone minds (which I find unlikely) I’m going to be taking this blog in a very different direction for now.
As it turns out I’ve failed the two courses I enrolled in this past semester. This has got me thinking about what I dream about doing. I’m not talking about a career or a dream job. I’m talking about my personal dream. The real reason I became a Historian and an Art Historian was not because I was interested in the subjects. I do have interest, and I do love history and art. I probably love them more now than when I began. However, the truth of my major was the difficulty I had trying to follow my first choice out of high school: Mechanical Engineering.
I thought that I could get around my problem with math, by becoming a historian and building reproductions and replicas of machines with modern methods and materials. Essentially what I wanted to do with engineering, except that I would’ve been better qualified. In truth this plan is flawed, even if I did get the job that allowed me to reproduce machines, I would be unable to do any serious research and get the word out to engineers. Because who would I be? Just a historian.
I’m sick of it. I’m tired of worrying about what everyone else will think. I’m going to take matters into my own hands and do what I want to do with my life.
How many of the great pioneers had professional training? Samuel Morse, who was trained to be an artist, built the telegraph. Michael Faraday was the son of a blacksmith and apprenticed to be a book binder. He discovered magnetic induction and gave the world the electromagnetic motor. Thomas Edison started out selling newspapers on train cars. Benjamin Franklin was a run-away-from-home apprentice in a print shop.
The truth? Greatness is not determined by a pretty diploma on a wall. It is determined by the spirit of the individual.
“I learned this, at least, by my experiment: that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours. He will put some things behind, he will pass an invisible boundary; new, universal, and more liberal laws will begin to establish themselves around and within him; or the old laws will be expanded and interpreted in his favor in a more liberal sense, and he will live with the license of a higher order of beings. In proportion as he simplifies his life, the laws of the universe will appear less complex, and solitude will not be solitude, nor poverty poverty, nor weakness weakness. If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.” -Henry David Thoreau, Walden, Conclusion.
It is high time I started building those foundations.