“Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved.” ~ Helen Keller
Life – no less than a roller coaster ride in itself. While it gives us innumerable moments to cherish for, it also puts to test our abilities and limitations. How often have we not got bogged down with the trials and tribulations that life has to offer?! The road to success ain’t that easy. It takes a lot of effort, character, perseverance and the right attitude to achieve and sustain the same, in spite of all the roadblocks around. To add, a pinch of inspiration keeps one going.
This very aspect reminisces me of a famous American Educator, a Social Activist, a World Famous Author/Speaker and a Lecturer – Helen Keller. She is one among the epitomes who proved that there are virtually no limits/boundaries except the ones we impose upon ourselves. While ups and downs are a part and parcel of life, there is something more that life puts us to test for – as goes Helen’s another famous quote – “We would never learn to be brave and patient if there were only joy in the world.”
Helen Adams Keller was born on June 27, 1880 in Tuscumbia, Alabama. In 1882, she fell ill with so-called ‘brain fever’ and was rendered blind, deaf and mute. Beginning in 1887, her teacher, Anne Sullivan, helped her make tremendous progress with her ability to communicate. While in college, Helen wrote her own autobiography – “The Story of My Life”, and in 1904, at 24, she graduated from Radcliffe, becoming the first blind person to earn a degree in Bachelor of Arts. In 1932, she was elected Vice President of the UK’s Royal Nation Institute for the Blind. Helen went on to become a world-famous speaker and author and until this day, she is remembered as an advocate for people with disabilities and everyone as well. In 1915, she and George Kessler founded the Helen Keller Institute[HKI] Organization devoted to research in vision, health and nutrition. In 1920, she helped lay the foundation of the American Civil Liberties Union[ACLU].
“Be of good cheer. Don’t think of today’s failures, but of success that may come tomorrow. You have set yourselves a difficult task, but you will succeed if you persevere; and you will find a joy in overcoming obstacles. Remember, no effort that we make to attain something beautiful is ever lost.”
We often reflect more upon what we do not own rather than what we possess upon our own set of limitations rather the opportunities that lie ahead. Helen has beautifully demonstrated the will that helped her rise above the challenges, to do something admirable. She never let her disabilities get the better of her. In these times of vast economic disparities and a looming ecological crisis, we need examples of people like Helen, throughout history, who committed their lives to justice – bringing more equality and fairness to the world. In a nutshell, Helen is truly Inspiration Personified!
Could not find a more apt closure that succinctly conveys Helen’s take and perseverance – “Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadow.”
P S – This is my Official Entry towards my LOB’s Newsletter, that garnered quite some attention.Well, happy that I contributed my bit. The entire Editorial Team was appreciated by the LOB’s Leadership Team for the hard work we put in.
Happy Reading ! 🙂