“And though our health we drank 1,000 times…”

“…’Is there anything else I can assist you in discovering, besides the villainy of your friends?’ inquired the abbé with a laugh.”
– Alexandre Dumas, The Count of Monte Cristo

The above line is possibly the most important part of the classic (in every sense of the word) novel.

Quite simply because it is the True launching point of the protagonist’s rise to greatness.

Because it is here, at this moment, he learns friends are less important than a proper, quality mentor.

 

 

As the blogger F. Begbie wrote:

“Like literally not a goddamn bit of motivation. I would wager that part of it was because of the fact that the average of your five best friends was like being friends with fucken The Adams Family at one stage. But as well as that, I never really got called out for any of my shit. Well, not really.”

http://thesoulisnotasmithy.blogspot.com/2013/04/winning.html

 

This is not to discount the importance of friends in a man’s life, certainly.

They are much needed to provide a support structure, a frame of reference, a means to share experiences, no doubt.

However, it is critical to put things in an all too necessary perspective.

 

 

Men have known, throughout history, that “placing an old head on young shoulders” was the best way to achieve even the loftiest of goals.

From Merlin and [King] Arthur to Obi–Wan and Luke Skywalker, heroes have only reached their True potential by, if only in one case, dousing the flames of youthful Pride.

And submitting to a greater wisdom.

Not greater strength.

Not greater intellect, per se.

Greater wisdom.

 

 

“We found that contentment in the late seventies was not even suggestively associated with parental social class or even the man’s own income. What it was significantly associated with was warmth of childhood environment, and it was very significantly associated with a man’s closeness to his father.”

http://www.bakadesuyo.com/2013/03/lifelong-studies-agree-living-long-happy-life/

 

That statement, and everything preceding it, should come as no surprise to readers of Joseph Campbell [with whose words I shall close]:

 

“Regrets are illuminations come too late.”
― Joseph Campbell, The Hero with a Thousand Faces

 

 

 

 

Ω

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