Dante on motivation

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Before there was Nike, there was Dante:

‘Now you must needs,’ my teacher said, ‘shake off
your wonted indolence.  No fame is won
beneath the quilt or sunk in feather cushions.’

‘Whoever, fameless, wastes his life away,
leaves of himself no greater mark on earth
than smoke in air or froth upon a wave.’

‘I offer you,’ he said to me, ‘no answer
save “just do it”.  Noble demands, by right,
deserve the consequence of silent deeds.’

-Dante, Inferno, Cantos 24

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