Friday Reads: Very Good Lives: the Fringe Benefit of Failure and the Importance of Imagination

Friday Reads: Very Good Lives: the Fringe Benefit of Failure and the Importance of Imagination

By J. K. Rowling

J.K. Rowling, author of the popular Harry Potter series, was invited to deliver the commencement address at Harvard University in 2008. Remembering the address given at her own commencement by Baroness Mary Warnock, Rowling realized she couldn’t recall a word the Baroness spoke. Bearing this in mind she decided to speak on two topics close to her heart: the benefits of failure and the importance of imagination.

On Failure:

“The knowledge that you have emerged wiser and stronger from setbacks means that you are, ever after, secure in our ability to survive. You will never truly know yourself, or the strength of your relationships, until both have been tested by adversity.”

On Imagination:

“Imagination is not only the uniquely human capacity to envision that which is not, and therefore the fount of all invention and innovation; in its arguably most transformative and revelatory capacity, it is the power that enables us to empathize with humans whose experiences we have never shared.”

This small book urging the graduates to “live the good life” by daring to fail and empowering their imagination, is shelved in the NEW nonfiction under Call # 158.1 ROW.

Rowling has directed that proceeds from the sale of Very Good Lives will benefit Lumos, an organization she founded to transform the lives of disadvantaged children.

My take:  Don’t be afraid to fail, cherish your friends and let your imagination work for you.

P.S. it took me less time to read the book than write this blog!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *