The battle of Agincourt, happened a few hundred years before William Shakespeare wrote the text, and I either never read, or forgot about this prayer about what leadership meant to the soldiers in the middle ages. Personally, I just don’t really grasp the sad reality of war being puffed up and propagandized as some grand event. When warfare comes, it signals a failure of humanity to work out its differences and how soon we forget the horror of the reality of it all. In the past, warfare was more personal, today we watch it from afar, and most don’t have to deal with the stench and reality of humanity going insane.
I don’t think there will ever be peace on earth in my life. It is a prayer I say each Christmas. Unfortunately, the weakness of humans with pride, greed, lust, and desire for more have created almost a systemic industrialized military complex through the ages. The top 1% of the planet's wealth probably is ok with war as long as they don’t have to realize that a lot of the ROI they bring in, is from weapons.
Please don’t misconstrue that I don’t think one needs a stronger defense in the world. For that matter, a good offense helps too. I think one should be more wary of the idea that with high power, comes great responsibility.
the irony is one version of augmanity has the working title, “tripwire” - a friend in the UN said it would be of value in conflict zones because it costs way more to rebuild than prevent the conflict.
This prayer was given to me by bob. as I read it today, I did understand it, yet, for some reason in the spiritual sense, I simply got sad while reading it. I think it is because man doesn’t seem to learn all that well, and it is easier to glorify and cover over the reality of warfare among men with pride and courage. The valor part, I get. The pride part, not so much as I age
damn, I got depressed in 10 minutes.
Enter the KING
WESTMORELAND. O that we now had here
But one ten thousand of those men in England
That do no work to-day!
KING. What's he that wishes so?
My cousin Westmoreland? No, my fair cousin;
If we are mark'd to die, we are enow
To do our country loss; and if to live,
The fewer men, the greater share of honour.
God's will! I pray thee, wish not one man more.
By Jove, I am not covetous for gold,
Nor care I who doth feed upon my cost;
It yearns me not if men my garments wear;
Such outward things dwell not in my desires.
But if it be a sin to covet honour,
I am the most offending soul alive.
No, faith, my coz, wish not a man from England.
God's peace! I would not lose so great an honour
As one man more methinks would share from me
For the best hope I have. O, do not wish one more!
Rather proclaim it, Westmoreland, through my host,
That he which hath no stomach to this fight,
Let him depart; his passport shall be made,
And crowns for convoy put into his purse;
We would not die in that man's company
That fears his fellowship to die with us.
This day is call'd the feast of Crispian.
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam'd,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say 'To-morrow is Saint Crispian.'
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
And say 'These wounds I had on Crispian's day.'
Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
But he'll remember, with advantages,
What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words-
Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester-
Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb'red.
This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remembered-
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition;
And gentlemen in England now-a-bed
Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.