Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.
~ Thomas Jefferson ~
Man is never helped in his suffering
by what he thinks for himself,
but only by revelation of a wisdom
greater than his own.
It is this which lifts him
out of his distress.
~ C. G. Jung ~
Two frogs were happily hopping around when they saw a big pail sitting in front of them. They both were so interested that they couldn’t control themselves – they decided to jump up onto the rocks around them to see if they could find out what was inside the bucket. When they couldn’t see from that vantage point, they decided to jump in together, splashing into a pail full of cream.
At first they were thrilled and drank until they could drink no longer…and then they realized that they couldn’t get out. Each time they jumped, they hit up against the slippery side of the bucket and fell back in. They kept trying and trying, until the bigger one said, “I can do this no longer. I’m too tired.” He gave up and drowned in the bucket.
The little frog told himself, “I’d rather die trying to get out of here than just give up and sink to the bottom.” He continued to paddle and paddle and then he’d try to jump, only to hit the side and slip down again. This went on for some time, until as he was paddling, he felt something solid under his foot. He stepped onto this solid thing, jumped, and he was out of the bucket! By continuing to paddle, he’d churned the cream into butter, and was able to jump out.
Never give up, for we never know when the moment when everything will change will come.
~ Daniel Levin ~
The Zen Book
Knowing others is intelligence;
knowing yourself is true wisdom.
Mastering others is strength;
mastering yourself is true power.
~ Lao Tzu ~
Zach Sobiech died on Monday, May 20th, 2013. He was 18 years old.
When he was 14 years old, he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a type of bone cancer found in children. Zach endured months of chemotherapy and had several surgeries. In May, 2012, more cancer was found in his lungs and pelvis. Rather than have surgery to remove his leg and part of his pelvis, Zach and his parents decided to enjoy the 6 – 12 months he had left.
So, Zach decided to write songs. His song “Clouds,” which you can see below on YouTube, has had more than 4 million views.
“My closure is being able to get my feelings into these songs so they (family & friends) can have something to remember me by or lean on when I’m gone.”
“You don’t have to find out you’re dying to start living…” ~ Zach Sobiech
Zach got to drive his dream car for a week, courtesy of his parents. His girlfriend Amy (“I love her to death; I will love her to my death.”) stayed by his side, as did his close-knit family and school friends.
He inspired so many people that Rainn Wilson of YouTube’s SoulPancake channel made a 22-minute documentary called “My Last Days: Meet Zach Sobiech,” which you can watch below in its entirety.
Have a box of tissues close at hand.
But don’t have them because of Zach’s death this week; rather, have them handy because of Zach’s life. His wisdom is more than most 50-year olds, and his heart is bigger than most, too.
After I watched the documentary, I felt stronger and blessed for having met him, my tears more happy than sad. And I wasn’t able to stop my smile in the midst of my tears, just for having met such an amazing human being.
Zach – My life is richer for having listened to “Clouds” and having watched 22 minutes about your 18 year life.
Eternal rest, Zach Sobiech, and may perpetual light shine upon you.
Your soul dazzles and shines with your light.
You are beautiful. You will be remembered.
Don’t be afraid to be broken open.
Light comes in at the broken places,
and light heals dark.
When you are healed,
you will be even stronger there.
Don’t be afraid to feel,
to hurt, to cry.
Pain brings wisdom and compassion.
Be like the oyster…
and slowly, patiently,
around that grain of sand,
produce a perfect pearl.
~ Kate Strasburg ~