Wednesday, September 16, 2015

The Rise: The Unfinished Masterpiece

[The Rise]

In the second chapter of The Rise, Sarah Lewis mentions "near misses" and how those can motivate future actions. She provides several examples.  

What observation concerning "near misses" mentioned by Lewis did you find especially helpful or notable? Why or how so? Please provide a page number. 

18 comments:

Mercedes H said...

The observation on pg. 20 in which Czeslaw Milosz states, "there is always the feeling that you didn't unveil yourself enough. A book is finished and appears and I feel, Well, next time I will unveil myself. And when the next book appears, I have the same feeling" is what I found most notable. This pinpoints the way I look at things. The fact that one can do something so many times, yet always see room for improvement is a great quality to have. I feel the need to get better in a necessity because the world never stops evolving and there is always a task, even if it is the same task, in which you can learn and prosper from.

Jacqueline C. said...

One of the "near misses" I read I liked was about Michaelangelo on pages 20-21.He was known for leaving his art unfinished. He was a well respected artist. People were able to interpret what may have been trying to portray in his work.He said, "The whole of Bologna was of the opinion that I should never finish."His work thrived and he grew from it. Michaelangelo is a well-known artist today. Some things in life aren't always finished and can be meant to teach lessons which I find to be a good thing. We learn everyday and "near misses" are a part of learning.

Alexandra J said...

On page 29, Lewis notes a quote by Winston Churchill, "Success is going from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." I really like this quote because it has to do with being a better version of yourself by improving at something every day. Sometimes it is hard to keep going after putting so much effort into something and not succeeding in the way you thought you would. But, you have to fail at something first before it gets better. Failing also helps you learn and grow as a person, which teaches you other valuable lessons. This quote also relates to instances earlier in this chapter that not every path is a straight line, there are going to be bumps and wrong turns before the ultimate goal destination which is worth it in the end.

Ashya Ford said...

I found the entire concept of near misses very intriguing, especially on page 22 when she discusses the "non finito" works created by the artist. I think that sometimes we forget to count our accomplishments if we do not get to the end result. Furthermore on page 24, she discusses "the point of mastery, when there seems nothing left to move beyond, we find a way to move beyond ourselves." I think this concept is important to discuss with the near misses, because when you do reach your goals, you learn to strive for something else. And in the event you don't reach your ultimate goal and/or life gives you a detour, you have to contour that failure or that misstep and use it to propel you forward.
-Ashya F.

Conradette King said...

I found the near miss on pg 29 to be the most notable to me. Winston Churchhill's quote, "success is going from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm," had a profound effect on me as I was reading the chapter. He is pretty much saying that there is always room to improve yourself. It is true that most people would rather succeed in everything that you do, but in all reality, failure is inevitable. What we do after after a heart-breaking failure is what really shows a person's character. I would like to think that both my failures and successes have shaped me into who i am today.

Jenee B. said...

I found it most notable when the author says, "We thrive when we stay on our own leading edge" (pg. 20). This stuck out to me because I can relate to it myself and I have slowly realized over the years that unless one is always striving for something bigger or better they may become lazy. If one thinks that they are perfect or that they have reached the top, there appears to be nothing else to seek out or accomplish. However, if one is always in competition with his or herself, and is never satisfied they will continue to improve and set bigger goals.

Natalie Thompson said...

The near miss that I found notable was from page 20-22. Michelangelo was known for not finishing his paintings, which became a style known as non-finito by scholars. This didn't seem to be something that was intentionally done. It seemed he had a better idea for something else and went for it. Not finishing paintings helped him become a better painter. I find this notable because I always heard as a child that if you start something then you should finish it. It reminds me of myself. I started nursing school years ago and never thought I would finish. I had to take a short break for a while to get some things together in my personal life. Now I am back in school finishing what I started. The short break I took was much needed, and I am doing better than I ever thought I could.

Georgy N said...

The whole idea of near misses is so fascinating to me. Failure is not always a bad thing. Failure can act as motivation to work harder. Although people view failure negatively, it does not mean you will never succeed. Sometimes you just need to find something you are passionate about and willing to work hard for. Like Michelangelo who was known for his unfinished work, no one expected him to finish David but he did and it was a masterpiece.

Kiana S said...

I think that this chapter is very interesting in the fact that there are so many great artists that felt like their work was not good enough or incomplete. One of the most surprising ones to me is Michelangelo and the Sistine Chapel (p. 20). This is such a renowned piece of work and he thought it was going to be so awful that he wrote to his friend Giovanni to "defend his work". When you think of something as amazing as the Sistine Chapel you never think about the artists having doubt.

Kiara Gay said...

What i found most notable in the reading was when the author talked about the note that Einstein wrote to a girl who told him she was having difficulties in mathematics, and he states "do not worry about your difficulties in mathematics. (p.24) I assure you that mine are still greater." This was notable because as the author is trying to prove, even though we feel as though we are below average on something in life or have even mastered a skill, there is still so much to know about what we already know so much about. Life is a never ending cycle of attaining new knowledge that brings about new practices that we never thought would be possible.

Ajeenah Johnson-Brown said...

One part that stood out to me was on page 29 where Lewis talks about near misses feeling eternal. Often times we take our losses and failures so hard, we don't realize it is just a minor setback. Our failures do not define us and it definitely does not mean it is unattainable. She brings up former Vice President Al Gore's near win of the presidency, where the office was literally taken back from him. We have all felt this before. To work so hard for something you could literally taste it, but it doesn't end up happening. Lewis then quotes Winston Churchill with a quote I feel is so inspiring, "Success is going from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm". So many people allow there dreams to die due to failure. The ones who can see past their losses and still have passion to keep pressing toward that goal are overall happier.

Sierra E said...

I found a quote that Lewis used when speaking to former Vice President Al Gore, attributed to Winston Churchill, was very fitting for the idea of "near misses". The quote states, "Success is going from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm (page 29)." I think this is a good reminder that success is never given, it must be earned and there are challenges to that. We have to be prepared for failure and remember that success is sometimes in disguise.

Kayleigh E said...

The near miss I found most interesting was on page 23 when Lewis was speaking of Franz Kafka. Kafka wanted all of his writing to be burned when he died. His friend that was supposed to burn them, did not honor his wishes. Even though Kafka had only published 450 pages of written text, it has inspired so many people to write on his work. The quote or statistic that really struck me on this near miss was that "a new book on his work has been published every 10 days for the past 14 years." Think about all of those books that might not be here today if Kafka's friend burned all of his writings.

Jade G said...

The most notable part of near misses for me was on pg 29 where she talks about the quote from Winston Churchill. He says "Success is going from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." Most people just give up after they fail at one thing. But those who keep trying after each failure will eventually succeed. It's all about keeping the faith in yourself and knowing you can achieve anything you want. I believe what Lewis is saying is that people nearly miss their chance at being successful because they give up so quickly.

Belainesh Nigeda said...

I loved how Lewis wrote about how people "finish" or recreate work that hasn't been completed yet. For some reason, our mind processes an unfinished work as a "classic" (even though it could've been mediocre) which causes us to expand our imagination and also show appreciation to the artist that did not have a chance to complete his work. In a sense, it shows that we are innately optimistic people and I love that. The author states, "we often linger over this final form of unfinished works, wondering how far what we are viewing, hearing, or reading is from that vision just shimmered out. When an artist dies before finishing what we expect might have been a classic, we often continue the enterprise, frustrated by a sense of foreclosed possibility" (22). I feel as though this concept of "finishing the undone" shows that we as people, are full of imagination. And I think that humans are generally optimistic because we assume that those works of arts are "classics."

-B. Nigeda

Quincy Sanderlin said...

The near miss that Sarah Lewis discusses in the story of Julie Moss on page 30, was very notable for me. This particular story stood out to me not only because of the inspiration the near win provided for the athlete and millions of viewers- but the reason she had her "near win". Moss was a half-mile left from her win. She fell short of that goal because she failed to prepare for the triathlon in time. This really spoke to me, as procrastination is the most hindering problem I deal with as a student. I have always been a procrastinator, and it effects my school work.( For example this post is almost a week late). This anecdote stresses how severe the consequences of procrastination can be. This in itself, motivates me to eliminate my procrastination problem, so it will not be the reason for a future "near win".

J. Murray said...

The concept of "near misses" and the idea that we can use those near misses to motivate us is an inspiring idea in itself. However, I found the quoting of Michelangelo on page 20, "'Lord, grant that I may always desire more than I can accomplish'" to be most touching. With those desires there is no doubt that there will always be misses, somehow always falling short of that goal that is impossible to reach. However, in those same misses comes the increased ambition and drive to still strive for those things that are truly impossible, and those that only seem impossible from the standpoint one might be at a particular time. I think this was such a great point to me simply because I can identify with those misses as I am striving towards a goal that may be "more than I can accomplish."

cassidy oliver said...

The concept of "near misses" in other words is the idea that it is always more to accomplish. While it is many examples of the "near misses", the most notable is that of Duke Ellington. His philosophy was that his best work was always "the one he has yet to compose" (Lewis 20). Because his work is constantly improving, there is no such thing as the best among his collection. Ultimately, past accomplishments should never hinder future accomplishments.