Toughness measured by survival might be something if survival was a palpable yardstick. But it isn’t. Because we all die. And whether we die today or die tomorrow isn’t enough to justify our “survive-at-any-cost” evolutionary software.
So, in light of survival’s tenuous facade, by what then can toughness be measured? How about the ability to put love over “survival”? How about the strength to see that no one life is more significant than another, because there is only One Life, of which each of us comprises a transient flicker.
Toughness is self-love in light of the littleness of “self.” There’s a much bigger world than “you” and “me.” But we are divine and delicate pieces.