5 Insights from the Official Spartan Field Manual (Part 2)

This is the second half of life lessons pulled from Halo: Official Spartan Field Manual. Once again, please bear with me if you are not a fan of Halo video games. Video games aside, this book is well written and enjoyable. It has vivid and vibrant illustrations that put the reader into the universe of Halo.

Here are the final pieces of advice taken from the Spartan Field Manual:

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1 – Know your limits.

Even futuristic super soldiers housed in advanced suits of technology have to be cautious. No one is immortal and immune from harm.

Know your personal strengths and weaknesses. Know what makes you uncomfortable and when you should walk away from a situation. It’s not shameful to take a step back and say, “Hey, I’m not up to this today.”

Knowing your limits is a form of self-respect and self-care. Pay attention to yourself.

2 – The mind is the best weapon.

Halo features several different kinds of guns and close combat weapons. Many of them are broken down at the end of the manual. However, the manual explicitly states that the best weapon a Spartan can use is his/her own brain. The manual also mentions that instead of working harder, we need to practice working smarter.

Our minds have the power over everything we do in life. Our careers, our relationships, our bodies, and our overall situations. The brain has more power than current science can understand. It’s a magnificent gift and recognizing this fact is the first step in using it wisely.

Life is hard. Use your brain because it’s the best weapon against any adversity or ailment.

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3 – Have empathy.

The manual has a few pages for Master Chief alone. It discusses the potential reasons why he was so prominent and successful in saving the human race from the Covenant. One of those reasons was empathy.

From the Oxford dictionary, empathy is, “the ability to understand and share the feelings of others.” Most might not assume a super soldier tasked with destroying masses of enemy fleets would have any empathy, but Master Chief did in every step of the war. He had empathy for the humans on earth terrified of an advanced enemy. He had empathy for the soldiers he fought with afraid they’d never see home again. He had empathy for his leaders who had to make tough decisions.

Master Chief’s empathy lead him to the conclusion that all humans must be saved. No sacrifice other than his own. He felt so strongly about this that he ended up saving humanity from annihilation.

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Empathy for others makes the world kinder. Life will never be easy, but with an empathetic helping hand, it gets better.

4 – If you fight for something, be prepared to have enemies.

It’s mentioned in the book that Master Chief was a hero to humans. He saved the earth. Because of this, it also made him enemy number one to the aliens he fought against.

No one wants enemies or conflict. The minute you set yourself up to take a stand and fight for what you believe in, you’ll gain enemies. You’ll have people who very much dislike you and want you to go away. However, that’s probably a good thing. That usually means you are making an effort to make a difference.

Enemies aren’t fun, but they signify a path towards fighting for what you believe to be right.

5 – Turn enemies into allies.

Master Chief makes an invaluable ally out of an alien hellbent on killing the Chief. He talked to an alien leader after his head and came out with an alliance that helped humanity win the war.

Throughout history we’ve seen the world as “us against them.” Let’s work on making it, “us.” We’ll never all have the same religion or beliefs about ethical issues, but we can all come together to defeat worldwide issues – like hunger, clean water, homelessness, poverty, depression, addiction, disease, cancer, etc.

These issues are enemies to us all. So let’s become one team and work to destroy the debilitating factors that hurt everyone, all over the planet.

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Reading Halo: The Official Spartan Field Manual gave me many insights into life. Know your limits, use your mind, have empathy, stand up for what you believe, and turn enemies into allies.

Thanks for reading this post. I hope you have a great day absent of evil aliens.

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