Fishing for Fun: And to Wash Your Soul


Herbert Hoover gives some compelling reasons why we should all spend some more time fishing.

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Key Takeaways

  1. Fishing is a chance to wash one’s soul with pure air, with the rush of the brook, or with the shimmer of the sun on the blue water. It brings meekness and inspiration from the scenery of nature, charity toward tackle makers, patience toward fish, a mockery of profits and egos, a quieting of hate, a rejoicing that you do not have to decide a darned thing until next week
  2. Contemplation of the eternal flow of the stream, the stretch of forest and mountain, all reduce our egotism, soothe our troubles, and shame our wickedness. And in it we make a physical effort that no sitting on cushions, benches, or side lines provides. To induce people to take this joy they need some stimulant from the hunt, the fish or the climb. I am for fish
  3. Fishing is not so much getting fish as it is a state of mind and an allure for the human soul into refreshment. A fisherman must be of contemplative mind, for it is often a long time between bites. Those interregnums emanate patience, reserve, and calm reflection – for no one can catch fish in anger or malice. He is by nature an optimist or he would not go fishing; for we are always going to have better luck in a few minutes or tomorrow, all of which creates a spirit of affection for fellow fishermen and high esteem for fishing.
  4. Where the following story came from I do not know. It may be apocryphal, but it contains a point of interest to all fishermen. I was supposed to be returning after a day’s fishing without a single fish when I met a boy who was toting home a beautiful catch. I asked, “Where did you get them?” He said, “You just walk down that lane marked ‘Private’ till you come to a sign saying ‘Trespassers Will Be Prosecuted.’ Just beyond that is a stream marked ‘No Fishing allowed,’ and there you are.”

What I got out of it

  1. Some beautiful, stoic-like insights on the benefits of nature, fishing, solitude, quiet

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