Each of us has our own purpose that we must be true to . . .
His name was Rubin “Hurricane” Carter. He was a successful middleweight boxer who was arrested and falsely charged in a triple murder in 1966. He knew that he was innocent, but for nineteen years he had to endure one of the most brutal environments imaginable.
The goal of prison is to break down the individual and remove all autonomy. Because Rubin believed he would eventually be proven innocent, he decided to defeat the system. He didn’t want to evolve into the kind of prisoner who keeps returning to prison because it becomes a comfort zone. He had to keep his individuality.
To maintain his sense of self, solitary was the price. Rubin “Hurricane” Carter:
Tough times don’t always respond to gentle approaches . . .
We like to think of power in terms of gentle, Tao-like stories. But there are times when we have to go to battle. I doubt many of us have endured prison, but we might be facing depression, job-loss, financial difficulty . . . whatever it is, there comes a time when a certain fierceness gets us through. The Hurricane faced the most difficult of situations with a determination to come out the other side whole. Watch this clip:
Independence comes at a price . . .
Rubin Carter refused television, radio and magazines because he knew that if he became dependent upon weak pleasures it would give the warden something to take away from him. Instead, he:
When it was proven that he had been falsely accused, the Hurricane walked out of prison. He refused to take civil action against the state, however, because that would force him to acknowledge that he had been in prison and needed compensation.
Instead, he became a successful advocate for prisoners’ rights and was awarded several honorary law degrees.
Know who you are . . .
It’s easy to give in and give up. During my biggest challenges I often start as a victim, sitting in front of the television growing a muffin-top that won’t quit. I read inspirational books, hoping that change will come gently in the night.
There are situations that I can’t “gentle” my way through. I have to power up. Get in shape. Get a little angry. Set a vision, and become voracious about that vision.
Determine how you power up in tough times. Because it’s in the challenging times that you will discover your strength and where your gifts lie.
There is only one you. In all of eternity, there will only be one you.
Be a powerful you.