On character

I have always believed that of all qualities available to a person the most important is integrity. This to me is the beginning of all wisdom; to be true to oneself, to set one’s own standard, to rely on one’s own conscience. In relation to others that means, of course, not to betray trust.

Next to this, and going hand in hand, I would place the quality of humility because, bearing in mind what I have said above, a person without humility to moderate their self-reliance must be prone to excesses; to bigotry, fanaticism or ruthlessness.

And to support these two, one must have courage, for without courage, all else can come to nought. To have standard and not the courage to uphold them is tantamount to having no standards at all. To have humility but no courage will bring a person into a state of mere passivity. But a person aspiring to integrity, humility and courage will surely not lack a fair sense of justice, loyalty, honor, generosity and compassion.

And finally indispensable to all else in a person is their abiding love for the universe – the larger organism we all exist in – the people, other living things, the nature around us and our existence in its entirety.

– Emeka

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