I woke up today and stayed in bed,
Only just long enough to gather my thoughts.
The temptation to rest was so strong,
Yet, heed its advice I did not.
Long ago sleep was my escape, When I was young and more naïve.
I know now what I did not then:
There's no changing what you can't perceive.
I was taught from an early age
That nurture could overcome nature,
And to hate everything deemed as offensive
By today's standards of correct culture.
I wrongly learned that self-esteem
Was more important than self-mastery,
That all perspectives mattered the same,
And there was nothing worse than meritocracy.
There are people trying to make the world fair
At the expense of others' ambitions.
They are chipping away at human rights
And condemning our oldest traditions.
This voice is loud and it is proud
About tearing down the current structure.
In defense of democracy it is prepared
To blame, exclude, and censor.
If you have ever worked to build
Something that transcends your own ego,
Then you know to truly awaken
Is to see a brighter vision for tomorrow.
Confronting our demons is as necessary
As closing a deep wound with a suture.
Simply opening the cuts of the past
Has never resulted in redeeming the future.
My mind is led to the well-worn path
Of taking note of all of my blessings.
In the heart of our wildest doubts
Gratitude is our only true possession.
Be thankful for all of the gifts
For which you did nothing to deserve,
But let go of your privileged guilt
And focus instead on how you can serve.
Serve your family and your community,
By being ambitious and shamelessly honest
About the world that you want to create
And inspire those around you to be their best.
To be awake is only half of the journey.
Seeing truth demands a call for action,
The kind of quiet valor that transcends
Any overt need for recognition.
The highest truth cannot be expressed
Therefore the teacher has nothing to say.
He simply gives himself in service,
And does not worry beyond the acts of today.