“A Scout is Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean, and Reverent.” Baden Powell.
The Scout Law has been in place since the founding of Scouting. Arthur Astor Carey, the founder of Sea Scouts in the United States, wrote a book on entitled “The Scout Law in Practice” about living the Scout Law in 1915. Since our genesis, the Scout Law has provided the guidelines and means to succeed in Scouting.
It is the duty of a Scout to uphold the entire Scout Law during his or her scouting experience and even later in life. Each of the traits of the Scout Law are meant to be weighed equally in importance. These traits work hand in hand to keep the morals and ethics of scouts at their very best.
The significance of uttering the Scout Law should never to be taken lightly:
To be Trustworthy, means one can depend and rely on you and your word.
To be Loyal, means you will be faithful in all of your commitments and obligations.
To be Helpful, means you will render aid to those in need.
To be Friendly, means you will be welcoming to others.
To be Courteous, means you will be respectful and polite.
To be Kind, means that you will be benevolent and appreciative towards others.
To be Obedient, means you will be able to comply to authority.
To be Cheerful, means you will be able to uphold a positive attitude in all of your endeavors despite difficulty.
To be Thrifty, means you will be able to thrive and prosper.
To be brave, means you will be able to show courage in the face of adversity.
To be Clean, means you will be able to keep an orderly and tidy appearance.
By following all of the above, one can hope to achieve greatness and success in not only Scouting, but in life.
With the understanding that each of the values of the Scout Law are equally important, there is one that I want to take aside to highlight in how much it has helped me in my experiences as a Sea Scout: Brave.
My beginnings in Scouting came Freshman year of high school. I was as shy and introverted as anyone could be. Sure, I was comfortable around close friends and what I found familiar, but I was afraid of the unknown. It took months for a friend to convince me to join Sea Scouts. It was new and unfamiliar, therefore no friend of mine. So I declined, afraid to venture into the unknown. Well, that would not be the last I heard of Sea Scouts. Persistent, this friend asked and asked, and well…I considered. What is the worst that could happen? Would I like it? Would the other kids accept me? What if it turned out to be life changing? And with curiosity mixed with uncertainty, I decided I would try. And that was my first step of bravery in scouting. Joining. It was a small step, but it was the first and would not be the last.
From there, I only grew. I began to take more and more chances into the unknown. And the more I did that, the more I learned and discovered, which lead to me having more confidence in myself. The more courageous and trusting in my abilities I became, the more I began to pursue in Scouting, where bravery was encouraged. This lead to me receiving the most fulfilling experience I could. From stepping forward to taking on leadership positions, traveling to meet and compete with other Sea Scouts in regattas, flying to the East Coast to learn about potential career pursuits in the Coast Guard, and many more outstanding opportunities, it all started with that first step of being brave.
The first step is always the hardest, but from there you gain the courage to move forward. And little by little, this bravery takes you further and further and opens doors to possibilities and experiences you never thought possible before.