Most humans are forgotten to have ever existed after two generations.
I remember reading Gilgamesh as a teen. Yes I know I was weird. The thought stuck with me: immortality is being remembered. How will my life impact others and how long will it be remembered? Those were the questions that drove a lot of my character formation.
NoW, life over half over and I have been truly lucky. Another thing that struck me at Young age: a man can count himself truly blessed is, at his death bed, he can count two true friends. I have more true friends than I can count. I have a very successful career. I have treated love (thought it was lost, I have tasted it). Yet, I know that, like the rest of the world, within two generations, I still have never existed.
It is not an easy calling to leave a lasting impact on the world. Hell, it is not an easy calling to leave am impact on a family name. Very few ever achieve it, and thus we remember their names and deeds.
My heart has to change. I, in all likelihood will not impact anything enough to be remembered in one hundred years. It is fairly narcissistic to think I could.
The question note lies in the arena: what can I do for true lasting happiness now; if there is no eternal remembrance to be achieved? I know this life is but party of a journey. What foundation do I note lay for the future parts?
I look back, at a life over half complete, and think of the best memories. Those were always in service to others. Bringing a smile to somebody's face, helping a strange, lnowing that I had helped alleviate any suffering, these were the brightest moments. Of course having a family and being a step dad was the brightest by far, but assuming that path is now past, the true happiness seems to only be found in helping others.
So, reflecting on that thought, in my successful career, there is very little room our time for that. Do I now look to a new career, that will pay less that a quarter what I now make, where I can help others; our, do I try to find a way to help other while doing what I now do?
These are but questions for anybody reading. They are the questions I must answer myself.
"When I hurt most, then may I help most. When I have joy, may I not relish in it; rather, may I find a way of spreading the joy."
When I was a teenager, a have myself a credo, " may all those who pass through my life be better for having known me." I fall short of it so often; but, it has always been in the back of my mind. This is not a statement of how good I am. It is a challenge to myself. Show love. Show compassion. Show gratitude. Not by my words, but by my life may these ideals be shown.
No matter what had come, our what may come, I will show love... And a smile.
This may not always be true but I fui strive for all of these ideals.
Love, peace, and joy to you all.