Being inspired vs being “self-inspired”

August 8, 2021

“Let us also produce some bold act of our own — and join the ranks of the most emulated.” — Seneca’s Moral letters

It is easy and pleasant to watch inspirational speeches, read inspirational quotes, and small nuggets of motivational proverbs. But why? Usually there is a part of the quote that can be flattering to the person reading them, or stands like these old commemorative statues our politicians make speeches in front.

Shift your focus, from admiring the statues and old edifices, and dig in deeper to what they really meant. What virtues were put in action to create these heroic acts? What was the story behind the men and women that accomplished all these incredible things? What was their motivation? Their aspirations? Their missions? Who were they serving and protecting? Why?

Inspire yourself by not only following in the footsteps of the people you may admire, but mainly in the cause for which these footsteps are now engraved eternally in the ground.

“Reflect, then,” he said, “that your ancestors set up those trophies, not that you may gaze at them in wonder, but that you may also imitate the virtues of the men who set them up.” — Demosphenes