The Road Less Traveled
A serious but enjoyable book about problems, discipline and how people fool themselves into believing that they are not free.
The book gets a bit too spiritual in the end, but it does contain some fundamental ideas that I have been turning over in my mind ever since reading it, without even realizing they were from this book until I re-read some of these passages.
Most do not fully see this truth that life is difficult. Instead they moan more or less incessantly, noisily or subtly, about the enormity of their problems, their burdens, and their difficulties as if life were generally easy, as if life should be easy. […] Life is a series of problems. Do we want to moan about them or solve them? Do we want to teach our children to solve them?
It is only because of problems that we grow mentally and spiritually.
[…] all self-discipline might be defined as teaching ourselves to do the unnatural.
[…] one day at the end of my thirty-seventh year, while taking a spring Sunday walk, I happened upon a neighbor in the process of repairing a lawn mower. After greeting him I remarked, “Boy, I sure admire you. I’ve never been able to fix those kind of things or do anything like that.” My neighbor, without a moment’s hesitation, shot back, “That’s because you don’t take the time.” I resumed my walk, somehow disquieted by the guru-like simplicity, spontaneity and definitiveness of his response.