Emailed to me:
“SISU” is a Finnish word, and it describes an almost spiritual trait of absolute, heroically stubborn, utterly unyielding, unflinchingly stoic, total determination. ‘Sisu’ has been described as “washing a car in the rain, finishing a story read to a child even though the child has long ago hopped off the lap and gone to play, raking leaves in a windstorm”. Sisu is what drives a person to keep a promise no matter what the cost, to do what is honorable or true or right no matter the personal suffering, to push on even when there is no hope in all the world. To have ‘Sisu’ is to complete something regardless of whether the act of completion has any meaning any longer…because the determination itself, the act of accomplishment alone, is what truly matters. It is the Finnish version of Japanese ‘Bushido’, the Samurai spirit, and it is considered the highest, most valuable, and most valued trait of any person. Sisu is the power to accomplish anything, and the power to be truly great.