College Admissions Essay: Life is Beautiful


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Life is Beautiful


A friend of mine recently sent me an email with an aphorism that read, "Don't try so hard, the best things come when you least expect them to." I shuddered at its implications. According to this, the best things come to you; you do not elicit them. Trying hard, it seems, is irrelevant to what becomes of our life. I would rephrase it: "Try so hard that it becomes easy, and accept the best things as the best person to receive them." For it is only hard because you do not know that it is easy.

The complete work is easy and lovely--easy as sweat and blood is easy, for the alternative of holding back, of reserving your power, of giving half your heart to what you seek, this, this, is hard. Only habit makes it easy. If you are not wise enough to know the good and true way, then it is your one goal, your singular objective to become wise. And once you are wise, you find what is good and true, and you give your all to it. Bend not your knee to distraction. Allow me to repeat: giving all is only hard because you do not realize that it is easy.

If I told you that I am called to be a writer, then it should be assumed the gentle task I have before me: study my homework for four hours a day, edit my book three hours a day, write letters and journal entries at every spare moment, read literature of all sorts--and only high literature, the best every written, nothing secondary or weak. All this must be done without a tinge of complaint, without any holding back, without any fear of failure, without any sense that I am sacrificing, without a feeling of duty. To complain is to reveal an inner contradiction.  If I do complain, I must figure out why, and solve that problem.

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 There are two types in this world: the fearful and the lovers. I will become diligent because I cannot resist that which I love. Confidence is relaxed in the midst of turmoil. Labor is automatic, is play--it is easy because it is intimate. You find what is good, and you give your all for it: this is the right way. Life is not a burden; life is beautiful.

Don't envy. Become.


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