Someone commented on a post I wrote some time ago remarking that I was “not one for brevity”. So, I’ve decided to keep this one short and sweet…
In less than 80 years from now (approximately the same amount of time since WWII began) you will, in all likelihood, be dead.
In fact, I will be dead, everyone reading this will be dead, everyone they know who is not a minor, will in all likelihood, be dead.
Another 40 years on from there, every single one of the 7.5 billion people currently alive on this planet will be dead.
In fact, in the time it took you to read up until this point, 50 people just died. And by the time you reach the end of this article another 150 would have.
If someone had the ability to demo an ultra high speed time lapse of a hundred years of human society within a minute long video, human beings would look like bubbles in a stream. Emerging out of thin air and popping in quick succession.
Within a 100 years from now only a handful of people will have any memory of you. And a 100 on from there, it’s quite likely no one will know you ever lived.
What this means is that your entire existence will seem like it never even happened.
Forget immortality, even your mortal existence will be nothing more than hearsay.
Before you assume that I’m saying all this to point to how utterly insignificant and inconsequential a human life is in the grand scheme of things….I’m not.
Quite the opposite.
Instead, I marvel at the fact that something so momentary and purely incidental, no more stable than a bubble, can experience something so profound as “a life”.
And not JUST a life, but something as profound as love, fear, joy, doubt, friendship, curiosity, rage, forgiveness, passion, learning, understanding, hope, despair, grief, catharsis, realization.
A single speck of consciousness so fragile, gone before it barely even had a chance to settle. Yet, the depth of experience that is available to this “speck” is the entire history of the Universe itself.
A single flicker of consciousness so fleeting, that most will never even have seen its flame. Yet, that “flicker” has light enough to reach across space and time.
A single pulse of sentience so brief, yet with the capacity to (in the words of William Blake):
“hold infinity in the palm of (it’s) hand,
and eternity in an hour.”
Others may forget your name. It matters not.
You know what it is.
Others may not even know of your existence. What does it matter?
You know: “you are”.
Let others call you a mortal. That is what they see.
Yet, you who cannot remember being born and will never know your own death are an immortal to yourself.
As brief as “they” say a lifetime is, to you, it is all of eternity.
That’s as short and sweet as it gets.