Quote #159 The First Question Which You Will Ask And Which I Must Try To Answer Is This, "What Is The Use Of Climbing Mount Everest?

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Quote #159

The first question which you will ask and which I must try to answer is
this, "What is the use of climbing Mount Everest?" and my answer must at
once be, "It is no use." There is not the slightest prospect of any gain
Oh, we may learn a little about the behavior of the human body at high
altitudes, and possibly medical men may turn our observation to some account
for the purposes of aviation. But otherwise nothing will come of it.
We shall not bring back a single bit of gold or silver, not a gem, nor any
coal or iron. We shall not find a single foot of earth that can be planted
with crops to raise food. It's no use.
So, if you cannot understand that there is something in man which responds
to the challenge of this mountain and goes out to meet it, that the struggle
is the struggle of life itself upward and forever upward, then you won't see
why we go. What we get from this adventure is just sheer joy. And joy is,
after all, the end of life. We do not live to eat and make money. We eat and
make money to be able to enjoy life. That is what life means and what life
is for.

-- --George Leigh Mallory, 1922