They live without hope.
I have never been able to rescue those on the banks of the burning jungle river. I probably never will be able to. All I can do is teach them to build boats. All I can do is tell them how to navigate the river. This is my curse. This is my blessing.
Ultimately, the power of change, the ability to escape stagnation and defeat, rests with you. Others may extend a helping hand, but they cannot change your life for you. Those who expect others to save them are already digging themselves a new hole. Change starts from within.
Even throughout the history of great prophets and religious figures who promised redemption and salvation, they always required one to make their own choices, find their road and seek a destination. Never could one be saved just by saying "Yeah, that long-haired dude is pretty cool. I believe in him, so I'm all set." There are plenty of misguided people who think that way. They do not understand. They are the self-righteous blind mortals who walk in shadows they never see. Empty words and claims are not salvation.
"Where is your hope, brown rabbit?"
The first belief that must be established is a belief in oneself. This is not a call to the ego. Flexing your personal muscle around town and boasting of your greatness is not a belief in oneself. It is the call of the weak who wait for others to acknowledge their boasts and second that emotion. To believe in oneself, one must first know their limitations. Then one can cultivate the belief that they can do anything against the backdrop of these limitations, many of which will melt away like hot butter on a delicious corn on the cob at a extremely well hosted barbeque.
There are self-imposed limitations, brought on by things like fear, such as not being able to swim or not being smart enough to pass a written examination. Then there are societal limitations, which must be negotiated. At the end are physical limitations that are accepted as impossibilities. You could convince yourself that you can fly and then soar through the air, but you will have to split from the entire program in order to do so.
There is only very bitter coffee
at the bottom of that cup.
You are who you are.
You learn from who you were.
You seek who you are to become.
Forget about the judgments of others, for they are not worthy, nor are they valid. Worry about your judgment of yourself, for this is what is most important. Find a way to believe in yourself again and deal yourself a new hand. The smart poker player knows when to fold his hand, for he knows there will be another dealt. Let go of those cards. Remember where you were, know who you are, and move forward. It isn't easy. It could be the hardest thing you ever do. Leaving your car stuck in the mud on the road of life won't get you anywhere.
How do you find the road?
How do you find your way back to a lost path?
How do you find something you never knew was there to begin with?
You've always known.
Sometimes we pursue goals with such passion and conviction that we lose sight of why we pursued them in the first place. An actress who chased after elusive fame and fortune in acting one drove herself so hard in pursuit of her acting dream that she eventually broke down, turned to drugs to ease her pain and wound up under psychiatric care. When asked why she chased her acting dream to the point of obsession, she could only say "It is what I've always wanted. I've spent so many years trying to get a break that I had to keep trying or all those years would have been wasted."
Some chase dreams at any cost. Some chase people. You don't have to look too far to hear the story of a man who went mad in his desperate pursuit for the "love" of a woman. Having developed a desire for this woman and spending much time and energy trying to "break down her walls" and convince her to accept him as her mate, every rejection becomes a slap in the face. All this time and effort needs a payoff. The more he obsesses about conquering this person, the less able he is to step back and look at what he is really doing. One who develops an obsession for any desired goal develops tunnel vision and is unable to see the signs and signals all around him. There is more to a glass of water than just the water and the glass.
Here is the accelerator.
Here is the brake.
You need to be able to stop as well as to move forward. Sometimes you must examine yourself and what you are doing. That which you truly need will be provided, and it is more likely to be provided when you stop chasing and trying to corner it. Letting go is never easy, but if you are playing poker with your life's riches piled up on the the table, you need to know what cards you are holding.
There was once a girl who dreamed of becoming a veterinarian. She loved animals and had trouble dealing with people. She went to school to pursue her dream, but the money ran out and she had to leave school and go to work full time. Things became more difficult as she lost one job after another. Her parents, who had been her safety net, retired and moved to a distant state. She began to flounder and considered doing very terrible things in order to keep her life together and to make enough money to go back to school. Some years later she came across an ad in the newspaper. A company was looking for people who loved dogs to work for them in providing products for canine pets. She took the job, did well and eventually they encouraged her and helped her to return to school. Yet, the goal of becoming a veterinarian was no longer really important to her. She was where she always wanted to be. She had gotten there without realizing it was her goal.
I put this question... here.
Those who hoard wisdom shall be rendered ignorant. Those who hoard wealth while others go hungry shall starve and be given nothing. Those who claim to be righteous while perverting and living off the names of their prophets shall be harshly judged. Those who are empty will overflow. You have been given everything you need, so take only what you need. Help one another. Love one another. Learn to cross bridges together instead of burning them from either side.