“Youth is not a period of life, but an attitude of mind; it is an expression of the will, of the power of the imagination, and of the intensity of the feeling. It represents the victory of courage over cowardice, of the spirit of adventure over the temptations of indolence.
We do not grow old because we have lived a certain number of years; we grow old if we give up our ideals. The passing years indeed tempt us to give up our high ideals, but the soul prompts us otherwise. Prejudices, doubt, fears and hopelessness are enemies who gradually bear us to the ground, and turn us to dust before we are dead.
He is young, who can still be astonished and enthusiastic. He who still, like a child, hungry for knowledge, asks: ‘And then?’ He who challenges events and rejoices in the game of life.
You are young as your faith. As old as your doubt. As young as your self-confidence. As young as your hope. As old as your depression.
You will stay young as long as your readiness to take up a challenge remains: receptive to the beautiful, the good and the great; receptive to the message of Nature, of your fellow man, of the mysterious. Should your heart one day become corroded by pessimism, eaten by cynicism, then may God have mercy on your soul – the soul of an old man.”
- Genl. Douglas McArthur, 1945