Musing About Folly and Courage


Julius Caesar is well under way. The assassination plot against Caesar is about to play out despite a myriad of omens warning him away from the Capitol.

Why does Caesar not heed the signs and stay away? Is it folly or courage? Arrogance or acceptance of fate?

To be fair, folly and courage are often confused for one another. There are many examples wherein an undertaking, decision, or action can be viewed as both incredibly stupid as well as heroically brave. Knights setting out to hunt dragons, for example. Or, more realistically, imagine being the Wright brothers testing out the first aeroplane (terrifying, but brilliant!). Are these two characteristics mutually exclusive or interdependent?

If we always made the ‘smart’ decision, if we always made the ‘safe’ call, what would we accomplish?

If we only listened to fear, or those who discouraged us – out of fear, love, hatred, etc. – we would not have human rights or feminism. We would not have heroes like Harvey Milk, Amelia Earhart, and Martin Luther King Jr.

Maybe bravery takes a little bit of folly; just enough for us to see hope through the obstacles which stand in our way. Otherwise, how would we find the strength to face them?

Cowards die many times before their deaths;

The valiant never taste of death but once.

(Ceasar, II:ii:32-33)

Caesar might be about to die, but the man speaks #truth.

Why yes, yes I did just use a hashtag in a sentence. Because I’m #hip and #withit.

I present the below topical reference to Rocky Balboa as further evidence of my hip-and-with-it-ness, which I think mirrors the overall sentiment I am communicating in this post:

#Preach, #Rocky! #NeverSayNever #Courage #Strength #KeepFighting #BoxingRingPhilosophy (okay, now I’m doing it just to bug you)

And now, onward, to the Capitol for a bloodbath!

Rocky Balboa banner credit:

One thought on “Musing About Folly and Courage

  1. Pingback: Et tu, Brutus? | catherine reads

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