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Find Your Anchor

I hate math. Always have, always will. That is not to say that, in most cases, I do not understand the significance. Perhaps the most manageable value to compute is a simple average, or "the mean," defined as "a number expressing the central or typical value in a set of data." I think you already see where I'm going with this.

Aristotle was one of the most influential figures to pick up what I am saying about finding a middle ground. This likely deserves its post down the road, but I'll keep it brief for now. I took a philosophy class in 2011 at my first institution, Worcester State University. There, I learned about Aristotle's ethics. It went through one ear and out the other at the time, but over a decade later, I finally got it. Now, if only I could take over my final.

Some of Aristotle's virtues:
  • Courage.

  • Honor.

  • Justice.

  • Friendliness.

  • Gentleness.

  • Modesty.

However, perhaps his most influential concept was that of "The Golden Mean." Similar ideas can be found in many other cultures, like Buddhism or Confucianism. The basic gist is that to live an ideal life; we must always try to balance the average between two extremes. It is not rigid - as life changes, so does the mean.

It's not precisely quantifiable. However, we can break it down for illustrative purposes into a formula by taking the average of deficiency and excess. We do not have nearly enough of our desired characteristics at the deficiency extreme. Inversely, in excess, we have too much. Both of these extremes are always counterproductive to our desire to live virtuously. Thus, we must find a moderate position.

Excess/Deficiency = Excellence

Living in the middle is to live in excellence. Aristotle even points out for himself that it is never in the exact center. The mean changes with these extremes; sometimes, it may be closer to one extreme than the other. Our practical wisdom in each situation determines this average that is always subject to change and can adapt to variable factors. So, it is essential to realize that when the mean shifts, so should we.

Find Your Anchor

I have always been drawn to metaphors from nautical themes. Ships in the Night by Mat Kearney is one of my favorite songs, and lighthouses always have held a special place in my heart. Lighthouses represent shining light through darkness, a beacon of hope. Also, for the better part of two decades, I have spent time in Cape Cod, where there are many lighthouses to tour.

The symbolism is extensive, even with some religious associations. However, all have the same theme - a strong tie between ourselves and one another. Imagine that our lives were thought of as a boat or ship - I will let you picture anything from a sailboat to an Oprah-like yacht, whatever makes your little heart happy. The anchor keeps the ship "parked," never straying too far from its embedded place.

Fasten your seatbelts; metaphors are incoming. So, why "Find your anchor?" Shouldn't it be "Cast your anchor?" Well, think about it. We must first realize we even have an anchor in the first place. Consider that if we all knew we had an anchor, many of our problems would be solved. Sure, life wouldn't be perfect. But we would never live in excess or deficiency - think of the possibilities.

Secondly, we must find the right place to drop our anchor. It will differ for each person, even when facing the same situation. Additionally, each instance will likely require a new, more efficient place to anchor down. There are so many variables - the changing tides, the uniqueness of each storm, the strength of the currents - that it is all but a certainty. Failure to acclimate could result in the sinking of your ship.

So, that's about it for now. I'll see what we can do to help us on our voyage. For many people, this is the first time I've heard the personal significance of anchors. A few years ago, I had a necklace with an anchor pendant (that I have since lost and need to replace). I had long wanted a personal symbol, almost like a little brand. If I had not developed the heart concept, Airspace likely would have ended up with anchored branding.

Before I go, I am working on another ancillary theme as we speak that I am excited about, primarily just for the fun of it. The heart and Herb aren't going anywhere: I've been fixated on design lately.

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