To increase the odds of a thing succeeding means that you need to understand the requirements of the thing and the threats to the thing. In the case of marriage and fatherhood, this means that you need to understand what could cause a marriage to fail, or how you could 'lose' your children. In the context of marriage and fatherhood, this means that you need to understand (as best as you can) what a marriage needs to succeed, and what children need to succeed. It also means that you need to be aware of the threats that oppose your marriage and your children.
Understanding the requirements of a thing requires the person to observe the thing (which means being passive/calm, and discerning) then ask questions to yourself on how best to meet the needs of the thing. Answers to the questions will come from the person (you), which may or may not be experienced as a '
' moment (i.e. a moment of comprehension). Eureka
Understanding the threats to the success of a thing requires the person to observe the environment in which the thing exists. In the context of marriage and fatherhood this means being aware of the surrounding immaterial and material environment (e.g. cultural attitudes toward men, civil laws; road traffic, biological viruses).
The types of threats to marriage and children change over time, space and other elements. For instance the threats to fatherhood experienced by pre-industrial cultures (e.g. modern day Amerindian tribes, or circa 500 BC Scythian tribesmen), are different to those experienced by first world industrial cultures (e.g. Texarkana, Toronto, Tewkesbury, Toulouse, Turku.)
In medieval times the threats to marriage were likely to be during childbirth.
In modern times the threats to marriage are likely to be from divorces.
In medieval times the threats to being a father were likely to be from infant dying during childbirth.
In modern times the threats to being a father are likely to be from family courts.
As a modern man that means that your present threat to losing your children is via divorce and the family courts. This means that to improve the chances of your 'thing' being successful (be it marriage or fatherhood) then you need to understand the threats that oppose it, just as the medieval man had to understand about hygiene in order to improve the chances of his son or daughter growing to adulthood. As was germs a threat in medieval times, so to now are Civil Laws a threat in modern times; as was hygiene a remedy in medieval times, so to now amending certain Civil Laws a remedy in modern times.
Understand the requirements of a thing so that you can make it successful understand the threats to the thing so that you can avoid defeat.
[Inspiration for writing this post was received after reading the title and first two lines of the blog post 'Marriage vs LTR' (http://heartiste.wordpress.com/2012/11/14/marriage-vs-ltrs/) over at Chateau Heartiste. The rest of the CH blog entry may be good, I don't know having not read it yet.]