Thumbnail Code for a Good Life

Thumbnail Code for a Good Life

1. Life offers opportunities to improve your lot (character, circumstances). You become vulnerable to the extent that you acquire family, friends, possessions…, and that you stand for high principles. You must fortify yourself with such attributes as wisdom, kindness, tolerance, and courage to adjust to, and advance against the hazards of inevitable change. Remember: the atom once was “immutable”, flying was “for the birds”, and the “man in the moon” was not on the moon.

2. To earn essentials for self and dependents becomes such a time-consuming part of life that you should seek a vocation that yields abundant satisfaction, even enjoyment, beyond the monetary rewards. You should acquire also skills most satisfying to you as an avocation so that, when alone, you could be pleasurably occupied.

3. You should become actively familiar with the creative process, and most importantly you should practice it in human relationships. The alternative is a leveling-off and stagnation.

4. In family, community and business life, there are abundant occasions for service, rewarding  to the recipients, of course, but especially rewarding to the individual who serves: in expressions  of love, in friendships, and in gaining a facility to share or lead.

5. Look and think ahead, prepare early into specifics. Ideas germinate and eventually bloom with a glow that usually depends upon the time you nurture them. Scheduled obligations are best fulfilled by forethought. For a group project, do your homework; don’t go into a session empty-handed.

6. Have faith in the enduring glory of family life – preferable in an unfettered environment for benefits of inspiration, exhilaration and recreation. Place high in your score of mortal values: family, friends, spacious woodlands, unending sky, fresh air and clear water.

7. Choose wisely. In old age, memories become vivid and vital. They could haunt you. Begin early in life to assure that your memories ultimately will delight you.

8. Excellence has no boundaries. Reach toward excellence in everything you say or do.

            A. Cooper Ballentine – May, 1983



  1. I spent the majority of my career in public service and I credit Bally and my parents with that decision. I learned “how to be in life” from my Kehonka experience. I think of Bally and all the girls very often. Would love to hear from folks.
    (camper ’68-’71, counselor early ’80s)

  2. […] Thumbnail Code for a Good Life […]

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