Overcoming: Our Greatest Glory

Although the world is full of suffering,
it is also full of the overcoming of it.

– Helen Keller

 Porbandar, India 

Our greatest glory is not in never falling,
but in rising every time we fall.
– Confucius

A man recycles bombshells into flowerpots in Kayan, Afghanistan

Indeed, this life is a test. It is a test of many things –
of our convictions and priorities, our faith and our faithfulness,
our patience and our resilience, and in the end,
our ultimate desires.
– Sheri L. Dew

Bamiyan, Afghanistan

A good half of the art of living is resilience.
– Alain de Botton

Java, Indonesia

Make-believe conquers the tools of war as children clamber over an abandoned anti-aircraft gun in Beirut, Lebanon, 1982. These tools of war became an improvised playground demonstrating the resilience of children. No matter how dire the situation, how dangerous the environment, children need to play. Whether it is splashing in puddles or climbing on abandoned tanks, their world of make-believe is almost as important as food and shelter.

Goa, India

Man never made any material as resilient as the human spirit.
– Bern Williams

A blind musician at the temple of Angkor Wat, Angkor, Cambodia
This Tibetan man from Lhasa would walk five miles every day around the local Monastery as part of his Buddhist meditation practice.

Our greatest weakness lies in giving up.
The most certain way to succeed is
always to try just one more time.
– Thomas Edison

After the monsoon, this Indonesian woman attempts to rescue her rice plants. With the blackened earth flattened by the retreating floodwaters and trees stripped of their leaves, it is a bleak scene. The woman’s efforts are necessary for the continued subsistence of her family.

Students attend class in a partially destroyed building in central Kabul, Afghanistan.

Herat, Afghanistan

Have courage for the great sorrows of life and patience for the small ones; and when you have laboriously accomplished your daily task, go to sleep in peace.
– Victor Hugo

Two young boys carry wood to their homes for the family’s cook fire.

In order to succeed, people need a sense of self-efficacy, to struggle together with resilience to meet the inevitable obstacles and inequities of life.
– Albert Bandura

Man carries his injured friend in Kabul, Afghanistan

Kabul, Afghanistan, was once known as a city of gardens. Afghans of all ages love to grow flowers and use them to decorate everything from their homes to their bicycles.
Baluchistan, Pakistan
A doctor with his patient in hospital in Peshawar, Pakistan