Tuesday, June 10, 2008

The Fringe Benefits of Failure and the Importance of Imagination

I just watched the commencement address of this year's Harvard graduation given by J.K. Rowling, entitled: "The Fringe Benefits of Failure and the Importance of Imagination."

This quote goes out to the artist wayers:

So why do I talk about the benefits of failure? Simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me. Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one arena I believed I truly belonged. I was set free, because my greatest fear had already been realised, and I was still alive, and I still had a daughter whom I adored, and I had an old typewriter and a big idea. And so rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life. J.K. Rowling

This one is for those who value the power of imagination and see the link to "loving our neighbors."

Imagination is not only the uniquely human capacity to envision that which is not, and therefore the fount of all invention and innovation. In its arguably most transformative and revelatory capacity, it is the power that enables us to empathize with humans whose experiences we have never shared. J.K. Rowling

Listen to the speech

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