“Courage is not simply one of the virtues…

“Courage is not simply one of the virtues… but the form of every virtue at its testing point.”  — C.S. Lewis

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2 thoughts on ““Courage is not simply one of the virtues…

  1. Courage is a very misunderstood quality in our modern culture, a fact which puts everything we hold dear at risk. Winston Churchill weighed in on the issue in a similiar fashion as C.S. Lewis—“Courage is rightly esteemed the first of human qualities because it is the quality that guarantees all others.” Samuel Johnson’s take (1709-1784)went like this—“Courage is reckoned the greatest of all virtues, because unless a man has that virtue, he has no security for preserving any other.” However, just being able to quote these definitions does not guarantee that a man will act with courage in any given situation. I have come to conclude that the decision to act with courage must be a
    settled issue in the heart much as the decision to love…your wife, your country, your God, etc. come what may! I say this because of my own observations of life, because of my own successess and failures, and because courage is a heart issue rather that a cerebral exercise or mere logic. It comes to us from the root word “cor” where we get coronary and core, speaking of our very essence. I like the 1828 Webster’s take which says that courage is the act of facing and dealing with those things determined to be dangerous, difficult or unpleasant rather that withdrawing from them. Sometimes we forget that withdrawing is cowardice, a very unpopular term in our modern lexicon. My Dad, a Baptist pastor, was fond of quoting Billy Graham on various subjects—“Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened.” By definition courageous acts can be found anywhere there are dangerous, difficult or unpleasant situations that require a response. These “acts” can serve to demonstrate that life, or certain aspects of life, have such intrinsic that personal sacrifice is sometimes required to preserve and protect them. Acts of cowardice demonstrate just the opposite.

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