“For the Greeks the challenge had, for the most part, to be public. One can win no honor in seclusion. One cannot test oneself against nothing. The Greeks knew humans are great self-deceivers and not to be trusted in self-evaluation. If you think yourself a great boxer, then box. If you feel yourself a great poet, then recite your poetry and be judged. To falter in the face of the public, to lose one’s nerve, or flinch from conflict, this was to lose honor. One could lose honorable, but the failure to strive honestly and with one’s complete capacity would bring condemnation. Even, as Homer recounts, fleeing before an overmastering foe is not shameful. It is not taking the field at all that defines true failure. To be in the ring is to be alive – to risk nothing in the public realm is to be little more than a ghost in the world.”