Radio 2 Wogan - Pause for Thought
27th March 1997
It was great to see the hero yaughtsman, Pete Moss arrive back in France and being honoured for his bravery. It wasn’t just a momentary act of courage. He really knew the danger he was putting himself in when he set off against a force nine gale to save a fellow yaughtsman lost in his dingy.
He wrote in his diary how at any moment one of the fifty-foot waves could have smashed his boat and how he felt powerless in the face of nature - something that we in our cosy little world never really experience. We worry about a bit of drizzle, but whenever I hear the shipping forecasts I’m reminded that some people daily have to be wary of the awesome power of mother nature.
The nearest I’ve got to sailing was a session of wind-surfing on a holiday in Crete. My helpful instructor kept asking me “Why you got off?” every time I fell in the water. His one instruction was “Just hold on!” And actually he was right. If you just get hold of the bar and hang on to it, then somehow you stay up and the surfboard sails along. It’s an amazing feeling.
It’s also a great bit of advice - “Just hold on”. In Hindu scriptures, life is often compared to being tossed around in a vast ocean, but there is a boat to carry us across - and that is the instructions of spiritually realised teachers. All we’re being asked to do is just hold on to them.
© BBC This script was commissioned by the BBC for broadcast as “Pause for Thought” on the Wogan programme Radio 2.