Saturday, December 13, 2008

Sophomore year

At the sophomore meeting, before the school year even started, I felt completely lost. I had no idea how to get to some of my classes. By the end of the first week, I knew my way around and I couldn't believe how lost I had been. Now I wish the school campus was larger.

Compared to last year, my math and science classes are harder, but my Spanish class is easier. Another main difference is that I am driving now. As soon as my parents let me take the driving test, I can finally get my license, not that I have a car or anything....

The highlight of my year so far has probably been playing tennis and volleyball. This was my second year playing tennis, and I played much better this year. I played volleyball for the first time, and even though I have a lot of room to improve, I really enjoyed myself. My main sport is soccer though, and it is killing me that we haven't started yet! Last year, we were already conditioning by now.

In general, I think I like the High School more than the Junior High. This semester has gone by so quickly, yet it seems like a million things have happened.

Fate is Permanent

It is evident that Shakespeare believed that your fate was set; you couldn't do anything to change your destiny. He illustrated his beliefs through his play, Julius Caesar.

At one point, when the conspirators were doubting if Caesar will even come to the Senate House, Decius assured Cassius that he would able to persuade Caesar to come. Even when Caesar had planned to stay home, his fate took charge and brought him to the Senate House. Despite even the warning from his wife Calphurnia, Caesar, according to his fate, went to his the Senate, to his death.

Also, Brutus had the opportunity to agree to Antony's murder, which might have saved him in the end. Antony would not have been able to give his speech that moved the Romans so greatly.

Qualities of a leader

Leadership plays a huge role in Julius Caesar, a play by William Shakespeare. Each trying to gain power and recognition, the politicians turn their backs on what being a responsible leader truly means.

Mark Antony used his leadership capabilities throughout the play, Neglecting to consent the other politicians, he assumed the authority to offer the crown to Caesar. Also, through his speech at Caesar's funeral he turned the crowd against Brutus, bringing also, whether intentionally or accidentally, the death of Brutus.

Caesar led the defeat of Pompey, and he was so anxious to be crowned king that he didn't listen to Artemidorus's attempt to warn him of the conspirators' plan to kill him.

Caius Cassius had an astounding talent of persuasion. He was perhaps the most influential leader of them all, gathering a group of conspirators including Brutus, one of Caesar's most beloved friends, to murder Caesar.

If the above are examples of poor leaders, then what makes a great leader?

  • COMMUNICATION. A good leader collaborates, listens as much or more than he/she talks, and makes decisions with the consent of others, not single handedly.
  • RESPECT. Good leaders are bestowed authority by other people rather than assume it for themselves;they do not just take charge and dictate what others are allowed to do.
  • HUMILITY. A great leader does not have their position for glory or to benefit themselves. Sometimes a leader is not the person in charge, but a person willing to follow orders instead of give them.
  • INTEGRITY. Leaders need to recognize when they have made a mistake and have the integrity to fix whatever they can.

Brutus may have been the only great leader among them. Even Antony agreed in Act 5, Scene 5 saying "[Brutus] was the noblest Roman of them all." Brutus only took part in the murder for the good of Rome, not for power and personal gain.

Outstanding leaders aren't just world known politicians, army generals, or religious leaders such as the Pope or the Dalai Lama. Librarians, coaches, team captains, camp counselors, teachers, youth pastors, parents, even older siblings, just everyday people are the outstanding leaders
of today.