...let the words to Ithaca guide you.
It is up to us to live out our journey and to embrace each step along the way. Only then can we really get to know our life. This means accepting and fully experiencing the highs and lows.
We wise up the day we realize that searching for happiness outside ourselves often results in an endless search for something that does not exist. The best part about life is that we can rewrite any part of our journey whenever we want. Get busy writing. You have a purpose while on this earth. Make your journey worthwhile.
I first heard the poem, Ithaca, while at a wedding on a Greek island. To this day, when I read it or listen to Sean Connery read it, I feel inspired again and again. I love life and all the chances I have to improve, grow, and make each day count.
I hope Ithaca does the same for you. Where is your Ithaca?
Constantine Cavafy (1863-1933), translated by Rae Dalven
When you start on your journey to Ithaca,
then pray that the road is long,
full of adventure, full of knowledge.
Do not fear the Lestrygonians
and the Cyclopes and the angry Poseidon.
You will never meet such as these on your path,
if your thoughts remain lofty, if a fine
emotion touches your body and your spirit.
You will never meet the Lestrygonians,
the Cyclopes and the fierce Poseidon,
if you do not carry them within your soul,
if your soul does not raise them up before you.
Then pray that the road is long.
That the summer mornings are many,
that you will enter ports seen for the first time
with such pleasure, with such joy!
Stop at Phoenician markets,
and purchase fine merchandise,
mother-of-pearl and corals, amber and ebony,
and pleasurable perfumes of all kinds,
buy as many pleasurable perfumes as you can;
visit hosts of Egyptian cities,
to learn and learn from those who have knowledge.
Always keep Ithaca fixed in your mind.
To arrive there is your ultimate goal.
But do not hurry the voyage at all.
It is better to let it last for long years;
and even to anchor at the isle when you are old,
rich with all that you have gained on the way,
not expecting that Ithaca will offer you riches.
Ithaca has given you the beautiful voyage.
Without her you would never have taken the road.
But she has nothing more to give you.
And if you find her poor, Ithaca has not defrauded you.
With the great wisdom you have gained, with so much experience,
you must surely have understood by then what Ithaca means.