Learn from Experience

‘Old soldiers never die. They just fade away.’ And like the old soldier of the ballad, I now close my military career and just fade away an old soldier who tried to do his duty.” General Douglas MacArthur

Arlington National Cemetery from my visit in 2008

MacArthur, Churchill, and others performed valuable services for their countries and mankind really when one stops to consider the alternatives during World War II but following those conflicts there came a time, for MacArthur during the Korea Conflict, for Churchill almost immediately following World War II where they were retired, put to the side.

Sometimes in the modern world we tend to discredit those who bring a wealth of experience to the table. Certainly there are situations where those with great experience could be accused of being stuck in the past or holding on to “the way it was done before” but far more often those younger with less experience push past valuable experience in a headlong rush up fool’s hill. We would be wise to sit down and listen, really listen to those who have gone before, find what can be applied to our current situation and build upon the thoughts and efforts of those who have gone before. We do not need to reinvent the wheel – in fact by learning from the past we can probably save a lot of wear and tear on our own journey. Don’t forget to thank those upon whose shoulders we now stand, without their efforts and sacrifice we would not have the many benefits we enjoy today. Look out for someone who’s fading and empower them today…you’ll benefit from those well timed efforts.

Find someone today and share an expression of gratitude, it won’t cost you much but the rewards for everyone are well worth the effort.

In Supertramp’s “Fool’s Overture” the lyrics speak to the subject.

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