The NanoWisdoms Archive of Imamat Speeches, Interviews and Writings wishes all Happy New Year.
A New Year brings with it the promise of change and 2017 promises to be memorable year, full of change, for both Ismailis and the world, as a whole. This year we Ismailis will, In’Shah’Allah, celebrate His Highness the Aga Khan’s Diamond Jubilee — marking 60 glorious years of his Imamat — and eagerly look forward to new directions which his steady, guiding hand may take us. Meanwhile, the world will brace themselves for what, by all accounts, appear to be profound changes in direction on the global stage as American President Elect Donald Trump assumes office.
At a personal level, however, New Year’s is a time when we reflect and resolve to change our lives through the time honoured tradition of New Year’s resolutions.
Change and new directions — whether globally, communally or personally — require confidence, courage and conviction. Confidence to assess and chart a new course. Courage to set sail on the journey. And conviction to be true to ourselves and continue the journey, making course corrections around inevitable difficulties. As the Aga Khan said at Brown University in 2014, “everybody makes mistakes. Never regret them, but correct them” and so, when we face troubled waters, we must continue to have faith in ourselves and not lose heart.
However, what kind of change should we strive for? What kind of journey should we chart? It is said greatness lies not where we stand but in what direction we are moving and so we could not find a more fitting answer than the powerful words of America’s 26th President, Theodore Roosevelt, who said to “dare greatly.” In 2006, at the Aga Khan University, the Aga Khan himself said the path chosen for AKU was “not easy”, “certainly not risk free” but one “filled with the promise of high adventure.”
So, today, at the start of this New Year, filled with promise, hope and change let us resolve to “dare greatly” so we may feel the satisfaction and pleasure that only one who leaves it all on the field, “who spends himself in a worthy cause,” truly understands. Our theme for our New Year’s card is, therefore, “Dare Greatly.”
Click on the image to view the card and read both President Roosevelt’s and the Aga Khan’s inspiring remarks.
If this is your first visit to the Archive, we invite you to view our introductory video here.