After believing what I had once read as a teenager that the famous prose ‘Desiderata’ (Latin for ‘things desired’) was found written on a tombstone in the 1600’s, I was surprised to find out a while ago that the actual author was really the American writer Max Ehrmann (1872 – 1945).
I have always loved the words, which were actually made into a song in the 1960’s (does anybody remember that?), and although they were written well over 90 years ago the words are still relevant today.
Desiderata’s words that ring true with me are as follows:
1. Remember what peace there may be in silence ( I hate the background noise of TV and radio unless I am actually watching or listening to something interesting).
2. Speak your truth quietly and clearly (yes; my book ‘The Porn Detective’ said my truth for me).
3. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit (well said Max!).
4. There will always be greater and lesser persons than yourself (it’s a fact of life).
5. Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery (true, so true, even back in 1920 apparently).
6. Be yourself (you will not be happy unless you are true to yourself).
7. Take kindly to the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth (heart-breaking, but it has to be done; no more jogging for Stevie).
8. Do not distress yourself with imaginings (stop catastrophising and start living!).
9. Strive to be happy (yes, it’s the only way to be).
Thank you Max, for giving us these beautiful words of wisdom!