October 10, 2012

Choosing our course in life

I am reading a book of historical fiction by James Cannon, Apostle Paul: A Novel of the Man Who Brought Christianity to the Western World.  Early in the novel young Saul is seeking to discern whether to remain in Tarsus or to leave and go to Jerusalem to study at the Hebrew Academy of Gamaliel.  This conversation takes place between the young Saul and his teacher:

"How does a person choose his course in life?" Saul asked.

"Logic," [the teacher] said, "First, know thyself. This, you will remember, was the first precept of the oracle at Delphi; worthy counsel it remains.  Second, make a conscious choice. Study, examine, contemplate, then decide.  Third, plan how to go from where you are to where you want to be.    Fourth, act. Carry out your plan .... what is the highest good in life?"

Saul considered the possibilities. "To search for truth?"

"A good answer!" [the teacher] said.  "Now, when we find the truth, what should we do?"

"Reveal it," Saul replied. "Teach it, and live it."

"Turn that around," [the teacher] said. "Live the truth, then teach it."

Sounds like good advice for today as well.