To those unacquainted with sailing, a vessel beating to windward always looks erratic.

— Joseph Furnas, biographer of Robert Louis Stevenson

Life, as you may have noticed, is a voyage to windward. Everything good in it lies at the exact point of the compass from which the wind is blowing, which means you have to tack, zigzag back and forth close-hauled into the wind, gaining only a little forward progress on each tack.

What seems to be an erratic course is in fact the fastest, the only, route to your destination.

2 thoughts on “VOYAGE TO WINDWARD

  1. Oh I like this. I sometimes feel I’ve made a wrong turn somewhere and badly off the path of what I should be doing. I’ve got to learn to “live the questions” as Rilke says.

    • Another good one from RLS — “Quiet minds cannot be perplexed or frightened but go on in fortune or misfortune at their own private pace, like a clock during a thunderstorm.”

Comments are closed.