January 19, 2021

Spotter Up

In Depth Tactical Solutions

The Nile

2 min read

If I am struggling to make sense of who or where I am I try to be inspired by people who did great things. I’m reminded of the story about Sir Richard Francis Burton and Speke. Author Tim Jeal notes the old Latin saying, “Facilius sit Nili caput invenire: “It would be easier to find the source of the Nile.” was stated for a reason: no one could find the elusive spot. Many explorers, geographers and astronomers tried to find the source of the Nile. Men such as David Livingstone, the Moroccan Berber traveler Ibn Battuta and James Bruce all made attempts. It would come with a price. The Royal Geographical Society was keen on solving the mystery and so Burton and Speke decided to take up the RSG’s proposal and explore the uncharted territories. During their travels they were attacked by local tribes, both become deathly ill and lost much hope of finding the source of the big river. Burton was obsessed with finding the Sea of Ujji (Lake Tanganyika) and he eventually did. At about 400 miles wide — and at an elevation of 2500 feet it was the biggest lake that any Westerner had seen. Speke eventually found what he was looking for and wrote about his discovery under the title, The Journal of the Source of the Nile in 1863. Most men would have quit long ago if they were so isolated from other men and didn’t have the luxury of having a map to help them find their way through the hard terrain of Africa. It is to our good fortune that men with strong physical constitution and indomitable spirits have already done the hard work for us. When you are going through a rough patch try to consider men or women like these explorers that did the work. Be inspired. Answers are out there, role-models are out there, mentors are out there, resources are out there, goals are out there, and you just need to find a goal and go. Work on navigating along the river of the terrain of your life and map out where you need to go and then go to it. Be a better brother, work on finishing school, make amends with a dying father, be a useful son; life can be difficult at times but know in your bones that doing nothing will never give you a chance to find the source of your Nile. Get off your ass.

“Men who choose only familiar pathways rather than strange ones on their journey of self-discovery will never learn that they’ve learned nothing.”~Michael Kurcina

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