This is a conversation about victory. But it's not about just
any victory. This conversation is about a certain
kind of victory. Perhaps it's not the kind of victory we
ordinarily think of as victory. And the definition of victory we find
in the dictionary may or may not cover or include the kind of victory I
envision here. The kind of victory I envision here is victory like a
choice. Before I flesh out victory like a choice, I'd like to first
look at what it is to win, and then look at what it is to
decide. Winning, you may say, at least has a similar connotation
to victory ie it's in the same ballpark. But what has deciding, you may
ask, got to do with victory? The answer may not be what you're
for now the possibility of win / win (I'll
revisit this possibility later in this conversation), the usual sense
of what it is for me to win implies someone has to lose. All sports are
set up this way. Games are set up this way. "Win" in this sense is
simply one half of the inseparable dichotomy "win / lose". But when I
propose victory like a choice, it's not dichotomous. There's no
"or". There's no "victory ... or ... something" - like
"win or lose".
consider the difference between what it is to decide and what it is to
choose. "Chocolate, or vanilla?". Say you choose vanilla. The
difference between deciding and choosing comes out in your answer to
do you choose vanilla?". Typical answers are "I choose vanilla
because I don't like chocolate", "I choose vanilla because it's my
favorite flavor", "I choose vanilla because it's less expensive.".
All such answers are decisions not choices. To decide is
(quite literally) to kill off the alternative(s). All such
the killing off of chocolate. It's
"decide" has the same root suffix -cide (to kill off) as
fratricide, genocide, homicide, infanticide, insecticide, matricide,
pesticide, patricide, and suicide.
Choosing, on the other hand, is like this: looking at all the reasons
for choosing either chocolate or vanilla, setting all those reasons
and after consideration, saying "I choose vanilla because I choose
vanilla"" (or chocolate, as the case may be). This is true choice -
not decision. In this way, you could say deciding is a function of our
reasons and considerations, whereas choosing is a function of
who we really are.
Which brings me to victory - in particular, to victory like a
choice. This isn't victory like the win half of the win / lose
dichotomy. So I'm not talking about victory over
something or someone. Rather this is the state of
victory - if you will. It's victory like a possibility.
Neither is this victory in which I choose victory because I like
it better than defeat. Specifically, I choose victory,
and after consideration, because I choose victory. In
choosing victory, I choose living a life that
choosing victory is choosing living a life that
Life itself alreadyworks.
Life itself is already victorious. The victory of
living a life that
is the inevitable outcome of looking for
what's already so
and choosing it. I choose
my childrenbecause I choose
There's no other because. I choose my family because I choose my
There's no other because. I choose Life the way it is
because I choose Life the way it is. There's no other because. In
particular, I choose my life the way it is because I choose my life
the way it is. There's no other because.
At some point prior to this possibility, this victory would have
had to be considered a victory over the circumstances.
That's good, noble - valiant in fact.
with it. Just remember, what I'm proposing is the state of victory
- not victory over anything. Victory over the
circumstances is a bit like the "win" side of "win / lose". It's
really not what I have in mind - at least not here.
No, this victory is simply chosen. It's a chosen way
of being. It's a chosen way of life. It's a chosen relationship
with Life itself. And it's chosen
and after consideration. I choose victory because I choose
victory. There's no other because. There's no other reason.
Nothing is killed off.
Choosing victory, which is to say choosing Life the way it is (and
the way it isn't), is also choosing myself the way I am (and the
way I'm not). It's a
selection made after the decision making process is over. It's more
than that actually. It's entirely independent of the
decision making process. It doesn't require because. The
space it makes available for relationships is magical. Here's
what's arguably the essential component of
choosing them the way they are (and the way they aren't), and
choosing to be in them the way I am (and they way I'm not), and
choosing to be with those I'm in relationship with, the way they
are (and the way they're aren't).
This is victory like a choice. Now if indeed you notice win / win
goeswith victory like a choice (as
may have said), then I say victory like a choice is prior
to win / win. It's the
for win / win. It sets the stage for win / win. It
the space in which win / win can
in the first place.