Coubertin Quote for Jul, 09
When all is said and done … it always comes down to the struggle, and the struggle is noble.

Today's quote offers another poignant lesson for our life and times from the writings of Baron Pierre de Coubertin.  In 1890, the Baron published a series of articles about his travels in North America that were ultimately gathered in his book, “Transatlantic Universities.”  In the chapter titled “From North to South,” he observed that from ancient days to modern times, life had always been characterized by 'the struggle.'  While the historic perspective of this quote makes it sound like a generalization, the Baron might have been writing about his personal experience.  Across the course of his adult life, from his earliest efforts to integrate sports into French education to his last years of obscurity in Lausanne, Pierre de Coubertin knew the bitter taste of constant struggle.  When you look closely at the timeline of his achievements, it is clear that there was opposition at every major milestone.  After his initial battles in Paris, he must have realized that the years ahead would produce more unrelenting antagonists—and that is just what happened.  And yet, he never tired of the battle because he believed, as he wrote here, the struggle was noble. 

“The Greeks sought the perfection of the individual through the harmony of his various faculties. The Middle Ages preached asceticism, i.e. the soul subjugating the body, its supposed enemy. Then came the military ideal, and now it is activity that predominates. When all is said and done, whether one fights against things, people, events or oneself; it always comes down to the struggle, and the struggle is noble.”