Surviving and Thriving

I thought Vani’s post and the article on characteristics for survival was very interesting. I completely agree with the article on the physical and mental survival essentials. Fire is the ultimate tool to survive in the wild because its offers range from warmth to preventing disease (by cooking raw food). Being mindful of your surrounds is key to surviving, as in not dying. Living in the wild leaves a person very vulnerable, because many things can threaten his/her survival, and the first step to protecting oneself is to be aware of the threats.

Looking back at what we discussed in class, I’ve realized that we were actually talking about the ideal characteristics to thrive, not to survive. First of all, having knowledge or fame or power will definitely not guarantee survival if a person (or any kind of creature) was alone in the wild. However, once they learn to be mindful, and actually know how to live well, having the qualities we discussed in class will help in thriving. Because only after we learn to survive can we thrive, I think we had just assumed that the ideal creature was already capable of survival when we listed the characteristics.

The article acts as a guide of how to survive when lost or stuck in the wild. That’s why it focuses more on how to adapt to the change. Being mindful is like asking us to use an old instinct that’s been in storage for our whole lives, so we have to tell ourselves to be mindful in order to do so. Once we adapt to the situation, or the living style, we don’t need to actively think “mindful”. That is when we start to focus on what we can do to achieve a life even better, which requires the characteristics we discussed. So on different levels, the qualities for surviving and thriving work together, and both can be ideal.

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