William George Jordan lahir di New York tahun 1864 pada tanggal 6 Maret dimana karir pertamanya setelah ia lulus dari bangku kuliah adalah sebagai editor untuk kemudian melanjutkan karirnya sebagai pengajar. Setelah itu, Ia kembali bekerja di ranah literatur dan menjadi editor untuk beberapa majalah. Buku pertamanya ialah berjudul The Kingship of Self-Control yang terbit tahun 1898. Berikut poin penting yang Saya kutip dari buku The Kingship tanpa peruhaban/edit sebagai catatan pribadi.
The Kingship of Self-Control | Chapter I: The Kingship of Self-Control
Any man may attain self-control if he only will. He must not expect to gain it save by long-continued payment of price, in small progressive expenditures of energy. Nature is a thorough believer in the installment plan in her relations with the individual. No man is so poor that he cannot begin to pay for what he wants, and every small, individual payment that he makes, Nature stores and accumulates for him as a reserve fund in his hour of need.
The patience man expends in bearing the little trials of his daily life Nature stores for him as a wondrous reserve in a crisis of life. With Nature, the mental, the physical or the moral energy he expends daily in right-doing is all stored for him and transmuted into strength. Nature never accepts a cash payment in full for anything,—this would be an injustice to the poor and to the weak.
It is only the progressive, installment plan Nature recognizes. No man can make a habit
in a moment or break it in a moment. It is a matter of development, of growth.
The Kingship of Self Control | Chapter III : The Red Tape of Duty
Duty is forced, like a pump; love is spontaneous, like a fountain. Duty is prescribed and formal; it is part of the red tape of life. It means running on moral rails. It is good enough as a beginning; it is poor as a finality.
The boy who “stood on the burning deck,” and who committed suicide on a technical point of obedience, has been held up to the school children of this century as a model of faithfulness to duty. The boy was the victim of a blind adherence to the red tape of duty. He was placing the whole responsibility for his acts on some one outside himself. He was helplessly waiting for instruction in the hour of emergency when he should have acted for himself. His act was an empty sacrifice. It was a useless throwing away of a human life. It did no good to the father, to the boy, to the ship, or to the nation
Analyze, if you will, any of the great historic instances of loyalty to duty, and whenever
they ring true you will find the presence of the real element that made the act almost
divine. It was duty,—plus love.
The nurse may watch faithfully at the bedside of a sick child as a duty. But to the mother’s heart the care of the little one, in the battle against death, is never a duty; the golden mantle of love thrown over every act makes the word “duty” have a jarring sound as if it were the voice of desecration.
The Kingship of Self-Control | Chapter IV : The Supreme Charity of The World
Men who pride themselves on being shrewd in discovering the weak points, the vanity, dishonesty, immorality, intrigue and pettiness of others think they understand character. They know only part of character—they know only the depths to which some men may sink; they know not the heights to which some men may rise. An optimist is a man who has succeeded in associating with humanity for some time without becoming a cynic.
We never see the target a man aims at in life; we see only the target he hits. We judge
from results, and we imagine an infinity of motives that we say must have been in his
No man since the creation has been able to live a life so pure and noble as to exempt him from the misjudgment of those around him. It is impossible to get aught but a distorted image from a convex or a concave mirror. We do too much watching of our neighbor’s garden, too little weeding in our
The Kingship of Self-Control | Chapter V : Worry, the Great American Disease
Worry is forethought gone to seed. Worry is discounting possible future sorrows so that the individual may have present misery. Worry is the father of insomnia. Worry is the traitor in our camp that dampens our powder, weakens our aim. Under the guise of helping us to bear the present, and to be ready for the future, worry multiplies enemies
within our own mind to sap our strength.
There are two reasons why man should not worry, either one of which must operate inevery instance. First, because he cannot prevent the results he fears. Second, because he can prevent them. If he be powerless to avert the blow, he needs perfect mental concentration to meet it bravely, to lighten its force, to get what salvage he can from the
wreck, to sustain his strength at this time when he must plan a new future. If he can prevent the evil he fears, then he has no need to worry, for he would by so doing be dissipating energy in his very hour of need.
The Kingship of Self-Control | Chapter VI : The Gratness of Simplicity
Simplicity is the elimination of the nonessential in all things. It reduces life to its minimum of real needs; raises it to its maximum of powers. In morals it kills the weeds of vice and weakness so that the flowers of virtue and strength may have room to grow. Simplicity cuts off waste and intensifies concentration
Simplicity in act is the outward expression of simplicity in thought. Men who carry on their shoulders the fate of a nation are quiet, modest, unassuming. They are often made gentle, calm and simple by the discipline of their responsibility. They have no room in their minds for the pettiness of personal vanity. It is ever the drum-major who grows pompous when he thinks that the whole world is watching him as he marches at the head of the procession. The great general, bowed with the honors of many campaigns, is simple and unaffected as a child.
Life grows wondrously beautiful when we look at it as simple, when we can brush aside the trivial cares and sorrows and worries and failures and say: “They don’t count. They are not the real things of life; they are but interruptions. There is something within me, my individuality, that makes all these gnats of trouble seem too trifling for me to permit them to have any dominion over me.”
Simplicity in a character is like the needle of a compass,—it knows only one point, its North, its ideal.
Simplicity is never to be associated with weakness and ignorance. It means reducing tons of ore to nuggets of gold. It means the light of fullest knowledge; it means that the individual has seen the folly and the nothingness of those things that make up the sum of the life of others. He has lived down what others are blindly seeking to live up to. Simplicity is the sun of a self-centred and pure life,—the secret of any specific greatness in the life of the individual.
The Kingship of Self-Control | Chapter IX : The Revelations of Reserve Power
Every individual is a marvel of unknown and unrealized possibilities. Ninetenths of an iceberg is always below water. Nine-tenths of the possibilities of good and evil of the individual is ever hidden from his sight.
The untold revelations of Nature are in her Reserve Power. Reserve Power is Nature’s method of meeting emergencies. Nature is wise and economic. Nature saves energy and effort, and gives only what is absolutely necessary for life and development under any given condition, and when new needs arise Nature always meets them by her Reserve Power.
Nature, that thus watches so tenderly over the physical needs of man, is equally provident in storing for him a mental and a moral Reserve Power. Man may fail in a dozen different lines of activity and then succeed brilliantly in a phase wherein he was unconscious of any ability. We must never rest content with what we are, and say: “There is no use for me to try. I can never be great. I am not even clever now.” But the law of Reserve Power stands by us as a fairy godmother and says: “There is one charm by which you can transmute the dull dross of your present condition into the pure gold of strength and power, that charm is ever doing your best, ever daring more, and the full measure of your final attainment can never be told in advance. Rely upon me to help you with new revelations of strength in new emergencies. Never be cast down because your power seems so trifling, your progress so slow. The world’s greatest and best men were failures in some line, failures many times before failure was crowned with success.”
There is in the mythology of the Norsemen a belief that the strength of an enemy we kill enters into us. This is true in character. As we conquer a passion, a thought, a feeling, a desire; as we rise superior to some impulse, the strength of that victory, trifling though it may be, is stored by Nature as a Reserve Power to come to us in the hour of our need.
Catatan penting pribadi Saya dari buku karangan Wiliam George Jordan lainnya yang berjudul Majesty of Calmness https://satrio.web.id/notes-on-majesty-of-calmness-by-william-george-jordan/