Here Be Dragons

Disclaimer- the later portion of this article uses the real life example of experienced Native American Alligator Wranglers. I am in no way encouraging a novice to engage in combat with a dangerous predator.

In the days before the internet I was the type of person who would spend all day in a library. I would look through the old dusty and neglected books trying to find something interesting and unique. I developed an interest for odd subjects like Ufos, cryptozoology, mythos and the legends from around the world. The heroes and heroines of the stories would always rise to the challenge. It’s overcoming the challenge that makes life interesting. We as human beings need just the right amount of struggle to make ourselves strong. We need adventure and exploration just as much as we need food,shelter, water and love. We need monsters and dragons to vanquish. Yesterday, I wrote about finding validation within yourself and the false sense of self worth based on the approval of the crowd. That sense of validation comes from slaying your own dragons and advancing to the next level. Nobody in the crowd knows what challenges you have faced. Nobody else has stood in your place and faced your dragon or felt the heat of its breath. All they know is if they were present on the day that you got final victory.

On that note I need to make a very important point. Sometimes the dragon wins. But, he can’t hold out forever. If the dragon doesn’t fall and you go home that day with your armor dented and your lance blunted it’s not over unless you give up. You overcome by repairing your arms and armor and adjusting your tactics.

The image above was taken in South Carolina at a reptile farm. The water is full of the American Alligator. Native Americans wrestled with them and still do for tourists in some places. The jaws snap like a trap and when they do the crushing force is measured in tons. And yet once the mouth is shut it can be kept closed with one hand. The savvy warrior has learned that if he can just keep the mouth from biting long enough that the beast will get tired and be slain at leisure. The warriors learned to overcome by simply not giving up.

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