November 26, 2017
1. Failure and success
In Romanian mythology there is an old tale about a master builder called Manole, who was the chief architect of the Curtea de Argeș Monastery in Wallachia (south of Romania). The legend says that Prince Negru Vodă (Radu Negru) wanted to build the most beautiful monastery in the country, so he hired Master Manole, the best mason of those times, along with his 9 men. During construction, because the walls of the monastery would continuously crush, the Prince threatened to kill Manole and his workers. Desperate about the way construction went, one night Manole had a dream in which he was told that, for the monastery to be built, he had to integrate into its walls some person very loved by him or his masons. He told his masons about his dream, and they agreed that the first wife who would come there with lunch for her husband the following day should be the one to be built into the walls of the monastery, so that their art would last. The next day, Manole looked over the hills and sadly saw his wife, Ana (who was pregnant), coming from afar.
The vivid legend of the master Manole, related in a way to Tarkovsky’s idea from his last movie “The Sacrifice”, highlights the universal belief that no greater success can be achieved without a sacrifice. Paradoxically, the concept of failure stands out by definition as opposite to success and it is one of the most powerful tools that can be used in order to achieve that state of success. A concept so subjective as failure can only be materialized when it is acknowledged and validated by its creator. What a person sees failure in something or in a situation, other can perceive it a success, and viceversa. Since there is no general definition of such a concept, the only way to look at failure is to understand it through an own personal experience, that would confirm it.