On Common Sense

We all have heard of the famous pamphlet, Common Sense by Thomas Paine, and I could go on and on about it’s amazing contents, but what I wanted to focus on right now is its title. If Paine was writing this pamphlet to share information people were lacking, why would he have titled it the way he did? Not because everyone knew the information already, but because everyone should. He knew that once it was laid out for them they would more easily see that that knowledge was necessary and true. What Paine was teaching truly was common sense, but people had just forgotten it for a bit.

Today, our society seems to have steered away from those principles taught in 1776, but each of us has an innate knowledge that these principles are true, and can therefore be classified as common sense. When we take time to study and gain knowledge, those things that may have seemed foreign or “old fashioned” suddenly take on a new meaning, and you can feel their power and truthfulness as if it you knew them all along. Follow that common sense that is telling you that these things are true. We all have a desire to be free, we just need to know how to get there.

Yours truly,

Publius

Truth Over Trouble

It seems like all we see on the news today is fighting. Whether it’s political parties, countries, or personal fights, they are constantly surrounding us. Both physical and verbal weapons are being used to harm each other rather than lift each other up. However, Thomas Paine explained that “An army of principles can penetrate where an army of soldiers do not.” In this world where people’s first reaction to opposition is to harm those who cause it, the most light comes from those who instead teach and listen. So much knowledge can be spread as we share the principles we know to be true instead of attacking those who question us.

People misunderstand each other but instead of explaining, we try to injure on another. But Aristotle taught that “one exclusive sign thorough knowledge is the power of teaching.” We cannot prove to ourselves that we know about something until we can teach it, and what better opportunity to teach then when someone disagrees? And even better, what better opportunity to show someone you care about them? The simple act of listening rather than lashing out may be all someone needs. It creates a feeling of peace and kindness rather than contention and anger.

We must, as George Washington advised, “observe good faith and justice toward all [people]. Cultivate peace and harmony with all.” While it is true, the world isn’t perfect and not everyone is going to agree, but we must strive to be just instead of rash. Often, the pen is mightier than the sword and the kind words we use can make much more of an impact than we first anticipated.

Yours truly,

Publius

Words of Inspiration

Nothing inspires the mind and heart like a book. Whether it is about history, philosophy, or even for pleasure, we can often learn by sitting and reading a good book. Henry David Thoreau taught that, “a truly good book teaches me better than to read it. I must soon lay it, and commence living on its hint. What I began reading, I must finish by acting.”

Good words inspire and uplift! They motivate us to become better than who we were when we began reading. Even as we sit to read a fairytale or a fictional novel, there are lessons we can learn that help us progress. However, while reading often gives us much needed inspiration or motivation, it can also lead us away from progression. Harmful words cause us to think dangerous thoughts, and we must be careful of them.

Be cautious as you pick up a book to read, but as you do, remember all the possibilities a good book can hold. Remember to be seeking ways to better yourself as you read. Learn from the facts, the lessons, and the stories. They can all hold immense value for you. Remember the importance of knowledge and all that can be gained from what you read. Nothing can surpass the knowledge gained from reading and the actions preformed after you’ve done so.

Yours truly,

Publius

True Geniuses

In Cicero’s Republic, he goes over everything that went into making making the Roman republic as grand as it was. One of the many reasons came from the Roman Constitution. He states, “Our Roman Constitution, on the contrary, did not spring from the genius of an individual, but of many; and it was established, not in the lifetime of a man, but in the course of ages and centuries.” In this thought appears so many parallels to the constitution that was established in our nation. It was not created by a mere man, but by a convention of the greatest minds of their time. Nor was it made up of the ideas found in a single lifetime. James Madison made sure that our constitution was founded on the best principles scattered throughout all of history. The United States’ Constitution was a collaboration by the best from every generation, not only the founding. And, as Cicero continues, “all of the geniuses in the world united in a single mind, could never, within the limits of a single life, exert a foresight sufficiently extensive to embrace and harmonize all, without the aid of experience and practice.” The only reason that the founders were able to provide such a strong basis for our country was their experience and practice. They brought together 13 strong and independent countries into a confederacy powerful enough to overthrow a great empire not because of luck, but because of the knowledge they had been cultivating their entire lives. They had practice doing the right thing and knew what was best. If we ever want to follow in their footsteps, we must do it completely. We must gain the knowledge of the world’s true geniuses and study the experiences of the truest patriots who have come before us. Only then can we come together to reinstate the order which once was highly regarded in our country. It will not be found in the skill and wisdom of a single lifetime, but the conglomeration of every century that has passed.

Yours truly, 

Publius 

Keep in Mind the Glorious Triumph

We face mistakes on a daily basis. Whether they’re big or small, they’re inevitable. We also have to face the mistakes of others and the effect that those mistakes may have on our lives. Why, then, are people who work hard to live virtuous lives still faced with difficulties? It is because sometimes we must be cut down if we want to continue to grow. Life cannot be simple and easy because we are working for something that is priceless, and something with so much worth cannot come cheap. It requires endurance through a sea of trials and challenges. The wonderful thing about these hard times is that, as John Bytheway stated, “from [them] we can grow and progress if we choose to.” And that is key. We must choose to. We can allow ourselves to be brought low and stay there, or we can look at it as simply a new point of view and then continue to move forward. Nothing in life is going to be easy, but that does not mean it will not be worth it and that we cannot have joy. You must look at every mistake as an opportunity to learn and every trial as being one step closer to your goal. Just remember the words said by Thomas Paine, “the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.” I promise as you keep facing each mistake with your head up and the knowledge that you can only grow because of it, you will reach a most glorious triumph that will cause you to forget the pain it took to get there.

Yours truly,

Publius

The Road to Happiness

Peter of the Old Testament spoke that those that are happy are those who “suffer for righteous sake”, but why is this? We live in a world where anything that has to do with enduring or suffering is immediately seen as something that has nothing to do with happiness and should be avoided at all costs. However, Cicero agrees with Peter’s statement when he says that those who can be seen as happy are those who learn to sacrifice and endure. The question still remains as to why this is, though the answer is simple; people are happiest when they have a purpose. This is why it seems everyone is trying to be busy in some way, because it is their attempt to be “productive”, therefore making themselves happy. But just because you are busy does not guarantee you are happy. You must be busy doing the work you are meant to be doing. Everything has a purpose, including people, and those who have the most joy are those who recognize what their purpose and worth is and recognize the purpose and worth of the people and things around them. For example, many people place the most worth in money, but those who seem to have the biggest smiles are those who value family over cash. Obtaining that joy we all so greatly desire is a matter of finding what you are meant to accomplish and speedily working to accomplish it. Instead of filling our lives with things to make us busy, we need to fill our minds with things that will, as Cicero says, keep us busy while doing nothing. There is great virtue and joy that comes from earnestly striving to find that which you are meant to do and actually being willing to undertake whatever task is placed before you. If you are at a point when you are seeking for the happiness you seem to lack, I urge you to read wise words, study them out, and do whatever is necessary for you to find and accomplish the work that is set before you.

Yours truly,

Publius

Time that Try Men’s Souls

There is a monumental task ahead of us. We want to restore the country to the former glory that was gifted to us through blood and war. The founders endured a long train of abuses before they even stepped foot on a battlefield. Today, people tend to take the easiest route. They want the least struggle with the most reward, but that will never happen. There must be ample effort in order to receive a sufficient reward. The part of a restorer is not simple. We will struggle. We will cry. We will bleed. We will have toils, but we will ensure. Not because it’s easy. Because we must. Because it is right. Thomas Paine rightly declared, “tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered.” We have been under the influence of tyranny for decades now;it will not be easily shrugged off. However, the end result will be so worth it. We are pursuing the noblest course and will be justly rewarded in the long run. If freedom is what you desire, you cannot simply skate by. When we expect the lowest effort, we put in the lowest effort.

Despite the continual battle we have before us, there is still a chance of happiness. Happiness is found when your soul is in a good state, and what is a better state than the pursuance of pure liberty? Virtue and happiness are found together. We will be happy when we act virtuously. People go to all lengths to find a little bit of pleasure. Why is it so far a stretch then when virtue is concerned? Shall we not push back as hard as we can to overpower the tyrants? I know for me, it is no question. I will gladly fight for my freedom till I can no more, especially knowing what great reward awaits me whether or not I succeed. Are you willing to endure the torment? If not, ask yourself what liberty really means to you. I, for one, stand with Thomas Paine: “Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as freedom should not be highly rated.”

Yours Truly,

Publius

Seeing Those Around You

Sometimes we sit alone in a room, or are surrounded by people and simply feel alone. There are forces that are really good at making us feel like being a “peculiar people” is bad and means we have no one there to support or uplift us. They make us feel alone, and loneliness can be scary. However, I will once again shout, we are never alone, and we never will be when we know what we are doing is right. Our unique purpose, our goal, takes us further from the world’s idea of “normal” but brings us closer to each other. Light attracts light and virtue attracts virtue.

I have recently been reminded of this as I was approached by a friend who has been diligently fighting for the cause of freedom but who wants to get his voice out there even more. He calls himself Pharos, and he shared with me these wise words: “Our individuality is what makes us diverse, what makes us great. We all have unique gifts, and we all have unique callings, but we all have the same purpose. That purpose is to progress. In order to achieve this goal, we were given guidelines, and the duty to enlighten others. Our time is running out. We must discover ourselves. Who we are. What we are truly capable of. And what we were called to do. And once we do that, we must come together, and use our unique perspectives and gifts to lift each other up and to shine a light for the rest of the world. I believe strongly that I must set forth a beacon of truth. Will you join me?”

On our path to liberty, we will never be alone. Those who are virtuous and who seek for the same thing are there for you, supporting you, and waiting to do more. We just must open our eyes and see it.

Yours truly, Publius

Celebrating the Life of Algernon Sidney

Today is the 396th birthday of Algernon Sidney. For those of you who may not know, Algernon Sidney was a advocate for liberty all throughout his life, setting an example for those who would follow him. His most famous work, Discourses Concerning Government, was one that inspired many to fight for liberty, including the founding fathers. They read his works and looked up it his mighty example. In 1683, Algernon Sidney was accused of treason against the king for his writings, and was unlawfully sentenced to be executed. He was given the chance to take back what he had written and live, but he was not afraid of death because he knew he would leave the world showing all those who came after him that liberty is worth it. He was not concerned with his life, but only about those who could learn from him. December of that year, Sidney died as a martyr for liberty and sealed the truth of the words he had written.

Before he died, he gave a speech with some powerful words. At the end of this speech, as he drew closer to the end of his life, he proclaimed his purpose in writing and in dying, which was to “stir up such as are faint, direct those that are willing, confirm those that waver, give wisdom and integrity unto all.” This is the purpose he established for himself, and the one we are striving to carry on today. All of our words and actions should point toward this purpose, keeping in mind the sacrifice Sidney, and countless other men and women, made for this same reason. Today, as we reflect on the life this amazing man lived, we should also reflect on the lives we have lived so far. Have you lived in a way that continues to complete this goal that Sidney created? What are you willing to sacrifice for liberty?

Yours truly,

Publius

Why I Love Liberty

Throughout all of history there have been accounts of people fighting for liberty, obtaining it, losing virtue, and therefore losing that liberty. Then, as the years go on, the cycle has repeated itself. An important question to think about sometimes is, where are we right now in that cycle? Where do we want to be? Some people may be satisfied with the “benefits” that come from tyranny, while others recognize that the blessings that come from liberty surpass all others. The founding fathers loved liberty. They treasured it and gave their lives for it, and they set an example for us so we can do the same. Something I wanted to share is why I love liberty and why it is important to me.

I love liberty because it allows those with righteous desires to do all the good they are inclined to do. Liberty brings all those who choose to go down a viscous path to justice and holds them accountable. It helps people, both young and old, see what they are capable of and what they deserve. It helps people reach the potential that they have. I love liberty because with it, all those who seek knowledge will have complete freedom to find it and learn what they want to learn. Not only this, but it teaches parents that they have the ultimate power over their child’s education and they can raise them to do amazing things they never thought possible. I love liberty because it creates a society of people who love and care about each other; people who lift each other up instead of tear them down.

These are only some of the basic blessings that come from liberty, and they are not too far out of reach! We can begin with ourselves and as we are virtuous, we can do good, learn more, lift others, and teach others. Then, as the message spreads to others the blessings of liberty spread with it, and it becomes its own cycle. I love liberty because it makes me, and all others who experience it, happy! It brings real and true joy that is rarely felt otherwise. Now, the most important question is, is it worth it? Will you follow the examples of those how came before and love liberty enough to truly fight for it?

Yours truly,

Publius