Baden Powell on the Basics

I often refer to the basics, keeping Scouting simple and remembering the reasons we are here and why we do this thing called Scouting.
I attended a dinner in honor of a Scouter the other night, at the end of his comments he read from Baden Powell’s last message to the Scouts of the world.
I have read this before, but until the other night I did not see the simplicity in which the founder of Scouting saw things.
It is worth a look, to see that if we just keep it simple, we will always do it right.

Baden Powell’s last message (1945)
Dear Scouts,
- if you have ever seen the play Peter Pan you will remember how the pirate chief was always making his dying speech because he was afraid that possibly when the time came for him to die he might not have time to get it off his chest. It is much the same with me, and so, although I am not at this moment dying, I shall be doing so one of these days and I want to send you a parting word of goodbye.
Remember, it is the last you will ever hear from me, so think it over.

I have had a most happy life and I want each one of you to have as happy a life too.
I believe that God put us in this jolly world to be happy and enjoy life. Happiness doesn’t come from being rich, nor merely from being successful in your career, nor by self-indulgence. One step towards happiness is to make yourself healthy and strong while you are a boy, so that you can be useful and so can enjoy life when you are a man.

Nature study will show you how full of beautiful and wonderful things God has made the world for you to enjoy. Be contented with what you have got and make the best of it. Look on the bright side of things instead of the gloomy one.

But the real way to get happiness is by giving out happiness to other people. Try and leave this world a little better than you found it and when your turn come to die, you can die happy in feeling that at any rate you have not wasted your time but have done your best. “Be Prepared” in this way, to live happy and to die happy – stick to your Scout promise always – even after you have ceased to be a boy – and God help you do it.

Your friend,
Baden-Powell

I love the final paragrah. “Be Prepared” and live the “Scout promise always.” It really is that simple. I have said it all along that if we stick to the Oath and Law.. we can’t go wrong. In the footsteps of the founder, who understood the simplicity of a life spent well… spent happy.

Be happy Scouts and Scouters.. thats what it’s all about!

Have a Great Scouting Day!

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