A prominent religious figure was once asked how he handled criticism. He replied, "Badly." Whenever we are doing anything beyond the norm of this life, we are subject to criticism by somebody. Yet all great creators in every field of life have had to overcome the criticism of their peers to create something of lasting value for humanity. Johann Sebastian Bach was considered a second-rate musician and composer by the critics of his day, who considered his sons to be superior to their father. James Joyce's Ulysses, when it was first published, was panned by many critics as an 'incomprehensible' work. There is always the risk that we will be criticized, and perhaps even condemned whenever we try something new and different. Yet human endeavor has always benefited from those great innovators who were willing to give their gift to the world, regardless of criticism. Perhaps we need our critics to spur us forward to ever greater acts of sharing our creative vision. As Rilke said, "Perhaps all the dragons of our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us once beautiful and brave.