glorious failure

There is sometimes something recognisably glorious in failure. A man might not meet his objectives, but the struggle itself could be deemed a success if what he was striving for had become something greater than the issue at hand. The objective might have been reduced by circumstance to something much more elemental and in some ways more important – to the nature of the struggle itself. The challenge was not to be broken in spirit, even when all else may have been destroyed. What our hero thought of himself or what he discovered about himself may have been more important than anything else, more important that any actual, tangible, or manifest success.

The driving impetus for such a contrary position may have been a fervently held moral or political principle, or nothing more profound than a stubborn refusal to accept some undeniable fact of a matter. The belief is what defines him. The Hope is what sustains him. He is a hero because he has been heroic, not because he has won victory. He is a brave man because he has acted bravely, not because he has overcome his fear. He is a man of principles and conviction not because he has held them, but because he was prepared to stand up for them. He is a man of honour not because he has thought of himself in that way, but because he lived in that manner. In all things, his deeds and actions speak of the steadfast conviction of his beliefs.

 

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