“Dust in the wind, all we are is dust in the wind.” –Kansas
“We are the champions my friend, and we’ll keep on fighting til the end!” –Queen
Fate and impermanence are powerful concepts. I’ve dwelled upon them in my previous posts…just about all of them, in fact. You can find examples of this here, here, and here. If I am destined for failure, doomed to death, and my world will eventually crumble before me, what’s the point? Should I just throw in the towel? If we are all destined for misery, then why should I even try?
Should I just give up?
No, no, no! That is not my point! It is true that much struggle, much strife will befall us. It is also true that your existence, as well as that of all around you will be gone in no time. Face it, in about 100 years it will all be new people. 100 years…that’s a blink of an eye in the continuum of the 13.7 billion (or so) the universe has existed. For comparison, think of the age of the universe as a year. If you live to be 100 years, your life span would be less than second in that year (actually, about 0.23 seconds). So if our time is so short, then what does that mean? What is it you want to do with those 100 years…with that blink of your existence? How can I be a hero? Here are some suggestions:
- Make Something – Set yourself to building, or creating. Build your child a treehouse, build a business. Create art, music or poetry. Design a widget to make someone’s life better. Leave a legacy…for your own sake.
- Help Someone – You can volunteer at a soup kitchen, be a crossing guard, find a career where you can help someone…as a doctor, nurse, architect. Be a banker, but bank with passion and compassion to make a difference in your world (not the ENTIRE world, just yours).
- Become a Master– Master the piano, brain surgery, flying a helicopter, fixing motorcycles.
It may take years, it may take much of your time, but find something you love and master it! It will make you proud, it will be worth it.
- Love Someone – Take a chance on an old relationship gone bad, maybe it is with your mother, father, brother, ex-husband, or an old friend. Take a chance on telling someone how you feel…someone who might not know it…maybe it’s that huge crush, or a friend who doesn’t know about your romantic feelings.
- Love Everybody – You don’t need to trust everybody all the time, but you can give them a chance. “Respect all, measure each.” Most of those around you struggle to hold their ground in this wrestling match called life, and many are doing it honestly. Have compassion for them today.
- “Be” with Someone – When you are with someone you love, pay attention to them. Really listen. Feel their feelings. Empathize with them. When you interact with anyone reallypay attention. Be with them in the moment.
You will notice more if you really pay attention. Remember, you only have 100 years so use every moment wisely.
- Appreciate this Day– What kind of day is it? The warm sun, the cold breeze, the wet rain, the cold snow…appreciate them all. Take a deep breath…notice how it feels so refreshing as it replenishes your oxygen stores. If 100 years is .23 seconds, then 1 day is 0.0000063 seconds. Sands in the hourglass, no?
- Teach – Share what you know with someone. Share your talents, pass on your skills to the next generation, or your current community.
- Reach a Goal – Finish that marathon, lose 10 pounds, golf below 80. Finish college (just make it a degree worth pursuing)! The pursuit makes life interesting.
- Relax – Yes, just take a break once in a while. Maybe you could use a “staycation.”
No need to try them all, although you could in a 100 years, but maybe just try a few. So, even though fate will have its way with you, you can take it on with tenacity. You can be a hero if you put yourself to it.
…and you can be proud of it, because YOU made the effort!