“The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal
vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the
consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt.” ~ John Philpot Curran
At the intersection where the Welcome to Westley sign sits is an interesting sign of aphorisms. Not sure how they were chosen, but I’d like to comment on each.
- Light a candle, hold it high – a nice sentiment about living by example, being bold for what is good and just, and perhaps holding out faith, hope, and love.
- Westley Wildcats – might as well give a shout out to the home team
- Geographic center of California – hmf, didn’t know that.
- Freedom is never free – “The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt.” Often mis-attributed to Thomas Jefferson, was actually spoken by John Philpot Curran in a speech upon
the Right of Election (1790)
- Laughter, leavening for life – sounds kinda Reader’s Digest, but leaven makes dough rise, and laughter can lighten the loads of life
- Cool clean water – better than gold – especially true out here in farm country. Water is one of our most treasured commodities, and many wars are and will be fought over it.
- Life is short, do it today – Carpe diem! If you haven’t seen the movie The Dead Poet’s Society, you have missed one of the top films of all time.
- Some have eyes but can’t see – The difference between sight and perception can be vast – do we understand and rightly perceive reality? Do we value what is really important, or just the things the world tells us are important (power, possessions, popularity, pleasure, see 1 John 2:16)?
- Sell and repent – this is by far the most interesting and cryptic of the aphorisms. It could be a reference to the Rich Young Ruler (Matthew 19:16-22), who was willing to do all kinds of good works with his life, but was unwilling to follow God’s will for his life.
- Remember the tortoise won – The Tortoise and the Hare is one of the all time great morality tales. Moral of the story? Hard work and persistence outperform talent and laziness.