“The fishermen know that the sea is dangerous and the storm terrible, but they have never found these dangers sufficient reason for remaining ashore.”
— Vincent Van Gogh
Fishermen are among many who labor at occupations fraught with potential hazards, but our lives and well being depend on workers who understand that benefits often outweigh risks. Where would we be without their courage?
Caution is helpful unless it causes us to be paralyzed with fear. Fishermen and other professionals use fear as motivation for preparation, wisely learning how to read the weather, evaluate the limitations of their craft, and recognize when they need to remain ashore temporarily to minimize the risks. Then they press on, and we are all better for their refusal to be intimidated.
It takes a different type of courage to respond thoughtfully to others, whether in person or online. To make one’s thoughts available to an unknown public, even in the relative anonymity of a blog site, can be intimidating. I want to thank those who blog or respond with thoughtful and positive comments here and elsewhere on the web. Those of us who put our thoughts online do so with full knowledge that we may encounter argument, disdain or disapproval. Readers who respond in conversation are extending a type of generosity that not everyone is willing to risk. Those of you who do take the time to read and post comments are deeply appreciated, by me and my fellow bloggers, and also by many others who read your comments.
Almost all of us face fearful circumstances from time to time. I hope we will use that fear as a motivator to learn and prepare, not an excuse to retreat or withdraw. There are risks in connecting with others, but these are insufficient reason to remain isolated. May we continue to draw strength and courage from each other as we share our diverse but strangely unifying struggles.