Followers

My photo
College student hoping to expose people to thoughts and ideas they might not necessarily come across on a regular basis.

Preoccupied...

We often find ourselves preoccupied.

We often here the phrase, "There are two sure things in life. Death and taxes."

By a wide margin, though, Death often holds our attention more vigorously than taxes. Taxes come once a year, and after it's over, for most people, life goes on in the same manner as before.

Death, however, can come any time. There are no rules. There is no system that Death relies upon to determine its victims, or the level to which it will affect the rest of us. It is ruthless, it is cold, it is unyielding.

Jacques Roumain, author of Masters of the Dew, once wrote of misfortune:

It comes in anyhow, and sits at your table without permission. It eats and leaves nothing but bones.

These are the facts. We are powerless. There is nothing we can do. Sure, we can take precautions. We can be careful and not do foolish things that make injury or death more likely. Most people do that. I know I do.But it's impossible to know what's going to happen tomorrow, or in an hour, or even in ten minutes.

Life, like Death, is unpredictable.

Today, in Japan, hundreds of people are dead after an 8.9 magnitude earthquake and the resulting tsunami. This tragic loss of life is, unfortunately, just something that happens. The world will mourn for them, and the world will aid the Japanese in their time of need. We can keep them in our hearts and minds, even say a prayer if that's your preference. What we should not do, however, is let this scare us.

As time passes and we see these terrible events occurring, coupled with the dramatic and serious financial meltdown of the past couple of years, there is, at times, a growing sense of panic. People are seeing a horizon that doesn't exist, a horizon at the end of the world which we will all plunge from.

You know what, though? Maybe that horizon does exist. Maybe, just maybe, something really bad is coming. In that case, we need to ask ourselves some things.

Does Death become our life?

Does the future become our present?

Do we allow our extended gaze to blind us to the things that are right in front of our faces?

Death Barged In

In his Russian greatcoat
slamming open the door
with an unpardonable bang,
and he has been here ever since.

He changes everything,
rearranges the furniture,
his hand hovers
by the phone;
he will answer now, he says;
he will be the answer.

Tonight he sits down to dinner
at the head of the table
as we eat, mute;
later, he climbs into bed
between us.

Even as I sit here,
he stands behind me
clamping two
colossal hands on my shoulders
and bends down
and whispers to my neck,
From now on,
you write about me.


--Kathleen Sheeder Bonanno

I won't lie. I don't want to live forever, but I'd sure as hell like to live for a long time. A good, full, exciting life is something that appeals to most human beings. And the fact is, not everyone can have that. But how we handle that truth is what defines us as a person.

Do we wrap ourselves up in what might be? Do we set our sights on the intangible, and forget to live for all that's real?

When the time comes to go, as it inevitably will, what will you do? Will you look back on your life and see that you made the best with what you were given, that you enjoyed the time you had the best you could? Or, will you look back and realize that by worrying about dying, you never really got around to living?




Do me a favor. Take a deep breath. Now let it out slowly and realize something. Life is a miracle.

Appreciate it.

Make it worthwhile.

It only happens once.

----

This was a more melancholy post, but I tried to make it positive as well. I hope you all take something from this, and I know that due to cultural and religious beliefs, Life and Death mean different things to different people. My only goal is to help you, and myself, live for what's here and not for what isn't.

Later.

10 Responses so far.

  1. Very deep, makes me thinking about my life.

  2. Life and death are something that I think some people don't consider enough in their fullest extent and, most often, the only people that I have found that tend to have a better understanding of both concepts are those that have had a brush with death itself. Soldiers, those that have been plagued with illness, extreme sports individuals, and the occasional average joe that made it out alive.

    So, for everyone else, I have a favorite quote that really stands out to me. Don't get me wrong, I have no desire to die anytime soon, but I don't want to live forever either. The quote is:

    "We avoid risks in life...so we can make it safely to death."

    Just think about it.

  3. I agree with you. I saw a quote that was very similar to that one today. "I'm not going to tiptoe through life to make it safely to death." Almost the same thing.

  4. Sam says:

    Our time here is limited. But even if you feel like you're wasting time. I think you are not, I think you are just being you, and enjoying yourself...enjoying your time on this world.
    I'm grateful for everything I have, and I'm willing to work hard because I like seeing those close to me happy!

  5. How do you know life only happens once? ;o

  6. Alphabeta says:

    Nice post, I agree with the sentiment.

    @Christophe - that is a great quote, never heard it before.

  7. Venus says:

    awesome and a lot of truth in what you say...
    p.s.: love the new look of the blog

  8. Jung says:

    Find a way to live forever, and you'll find a way to never truly live.

  9. Westus says:

    Interesting post man, keep up the good work!

  10. rinns says:

    Really great post, it made me actually think. I really enjoyed it :)

Leave a Reply