24 July, 2015

Cliches of Life

A well-circulated quote, almost a cliche, but still a great reminder for each of us to value the lives we have and to make the most of each day. I am definitely guilty of flitting my days away at times--I could be so much more than I am. But, then, I start to question my priorities. Do we live each day to yearn after some kind of worldly success? To create some kind of notoriety for ourselves? This is ultimately a futile act in my opinion. We are here to encourage others, to contribute positively to the lives of others. Life isn't about fame, fortune or prestige; it's about acting kindly, fairly and with compassion.

I get about in this wonderful city of ours (Sydney) and use public transport a lot. I've seen so many people from all walks of life over the years. I've seen traits of humility, arrogance, selfishness, loveliness, anger and downright rudeness. In the CBD in particular, these human traits are more exaggerated: people walking down the street screaming into their phones, people who are still capable of giving eye contact despite the intense busyness and noise, and people who are so damn condescending and inconsiderate that you just wonder if they have any idea at all (when was it that they lost total touch with human decency/reality?).

Everyone has a story and we're all a product of our experiences. The trick is to never lose sight of the journey and the people along the way. "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams..." Does this involve treading on people along the way? I suppose some people might interpret it like this. Afterall, in these post-modern times, it doesn't really seem to matter how people reach their destination, it's the final destination that's applauded. I interpret 'confidently' as not resting on your laurels but getting up and actually doing something. It can be so tempting to lead insular lives but that's not what true community is made of. Does this mean we rant and rave about political or social issues on facebook, etc? Well, that's certainly not my cup of tea. In fact, I've been gradually scaling down my internet presence and bemoan some of the time lost thus far. People who aren't sharing minute-to-minute via facebook are still living valuable lives. They're just doing it in a more practical way. They're out there working really hard or spending time with other people in the flesh. In terms of my own reality, I'll never live the life I imagined unless I get out and physically do it: "Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do." (Johann Wolfgang von Goethe)

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