Sunday, August 05, 2007

A colt is worth nothing unless he break his cord

A colt is worth nothing unless he break his cord.

A dull, docile horse might have its uses but without a bit of youthful spirit it does not show much promise.

Applied to humans this saying is telling us that a young man who kicks over the traces is not necessarily all bad, just experiencing the difficulties of growth and adaptation that we all must go through. Many young men pass through a tearaway phase in their youth but later mature into fine adults and worthy partners and fathers.

The rites of passage from youth to adulthood are often fraught with conflicts and emotional outbursts as the young person struggles to come to an understanding of themselves and the time that they are a part of. If everyone accepted the status quo in a dull-witted, subservient manner there would never be any progress. A civilization must have the flexibility and strength to be constantly adaptation to new challenges and changing circumstances.

The careers of many successful people often show a time when they were rebels and perhaps helped to establish a new trend. Such people can often refer back to a time when an establishment figure told them they were a waste of space and would amount to nothing in life. Years later they are multimillionaires and their critic is still doing a boring regular job or surviving on a small pension. Some young men are, of course, just a complete pain and need a good telling to put them right, and you can never be sure if it was the wise old voice that set them on the right course, by giving them something to prove, or they would have achieved everything anyway.

A spirited colt, once broken in and trained, makes a fine horse. As another saying has it: Fortune favors the bold.

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