In my previous posts, I talked about how the thinkers and artists provide a three dimensional view of happiness, with the thinkers and artists verifying one another. I also talked about how the harnessing of the entrepreneur within each of us serves as the vehicle for traveling within the three dimensional pyramid.
The vehicle takes us upward to the apex of the pyramid if we use our entrepreneurial instincts. Once prepared for the journey with assistance from our family and a just society, we enter into “involvement” activities and then “exposure” activities leading to proper self-esteem. We then must recognize and accept the call, if sent, to begin the adventure. The virtues of wisdom and courage help us with this segment of the adventure. We must all resist temptation and use the preparation earned earlier to fight the many battles to secure the boon. Once the boon is secured, we must be willing to return to the threshold (justice) and await help to return back to the everyday world with the boon intact.
The following work by Homer is a great representation of this moment in which the hero adventurer, aided by the virtues of wisdom, courage, temperance, and justice, is at the threshold looking for the love of others to pull him back to the everyday world. In this painting, the veteran has put aside his Civil War gear for those of the farmer. He has survived the war and is now willing to help his country begin a new period of growth and prosperity. But, he is alone. He needs help to reconnect to his community that he left to fight the war. In 1865, when this work was completed, is was uncertain if he would be accepted. Fortunately, he was accepted and the boon of his desire to help rebuild a new country was delivered to his countrymen and happiness was achieved for the veteran.
As mentioned above, only with the love of one’s neighbor from those in the everyday world is the adventurer able to cross the threshold. This crossing brings great happiness to the adventurer and the boon to society. Just as with the veteran in the painting, the IOUs of life are now cashed in for happiness – the happiness of the returning veteran and the flourishing of society.
The IOUs are the many trials and suffering of the veteran during battle that he was courageous enough to accept, remain focused to the task at hand, and noble to secure the boon that was his to find. He reward for these many IOUs are his happiness and the flourishing of his society. Spectacular art representing a spectacular way of living!