today is my birthday

October 15, 2007

And, as is natural for a woman who just turned 32, I am thinking about growing old and dying. I thought about it for a last couple of days in fact, beginning with an analogy that occurred to me when I walked my dog on Friday evening. I thought – being alive in this body, right now, is like coming to visit. Sort of like visiting your aunt for a couple of weeks. I come over, stay at her house, am treated like the little girl I was when last she saw me, hang out with her friends – and then leave. For the two weeks I am submerged in her life, in a way, but none of it really defines me. it’s of no great importance to me how big her house is, how many cars she has or how much money she makes, right? I mean – I’m just visiting, I’m going to leave soon, so I can just relax, enjoy and go. Now lets imagine that I come over to my aunt’s for a visit, and decide that I have to secure my position in her house. Have to definitely have my own room – have it on paper, so it’s absolutely and securely mine, then have to acquire as much possessions as possible and accumulate it in said room. I have to make sure that I am known and respected in the house, make sure that I have a position of appropriate influence. I have to secure a “carrier path” so that my residence in the house is unquestionable and so that I keep acquiring more and more rooms, which, in turn, strengthens my position. And in two weeks I leave it all, and go home. Now doesn’t the second scenario struck you as a monumentally … well … neurotic, not to say ridiculous, behavior? I mean – I am here only for a while! Whatever I acquire, whatever “power” and “status” I build, I am going to leave it all behind when I go home. So, as a result, I get … nothing! I just spent two weeks getting terribly stressed out, working hard and I have nothing but a terrible two weeks and an ulcer to show for it. Would you agree? Also, being so very busy with establishing my position at my aunt house, I probably totally missed the point of my visit which was to be with my aunt! To experience my relationship with her, to experience being in her house and in her world. Sounds ridiculous and yet – this is what we do. We get born, we have only so much time here and we know it well, and we choose to spend it on chasing after all kinds of things that then we are going to leave when we we go. Call me crazy – but this just doesn’t make any sense to me. Now I did attempt to look at this from another point of view (I am quite proud of myself here) and to consider that I know I’m God who experiences herself as a human – but other people believe other things. They may not see being on Earth as a visit, for them this may be all there is. But even so – they too will leave. This is undeniable, unquestionable and impossible to avoid. And they will leave as they came – with nothing. I’ve been alive for 32 years. I will probably be alive for another 50 or so. 32 years passed in an eye blink, the remaining 50 will probably do the same. Then this existence will be over. So what should I do with the remaining time I have? What would I do if I just came to visit my aunt, knowing that soon enough I’ll leave? I would enjoy my visit! I would spend time with her, getting to know her. I would enjoy cooking meals, taking walks, reading books in the afternoon, meeting her friends. I wouldn’t have to worry whether those activities lead to anything – because there wouldn’t be anything to lead to… there would be just those two weeks. Two weeks for me to fully experience and enjoy my visit. This is what I believe life is about. This is why, I believe, we are here. To enjoy and to experience it. Enjoy the visit, make the most of it, do as many fun stuff as you can, see as many places as you can, and then go home.

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