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March 13th, 2021
The emotional resonance of the past dominates. So much so that we often miss out on the moment, and the impact that moment could have on who we are and how we experience life, and most importantly, the nostalgia we might develop for what is passing by right now.
An appreciation for the moment inevitably requires an abandonment of the past and a displacement of future plans — if only temporary.
If such a fact impresses anything it’s the fact that we are potentially missing out on so much in the present by diverting attention to past embarrassments, sorrows, regrets and even pleasures and prides. Just as we rest on laurels won from past achievements, we stew on past failure and heart break, and just as resting on laurels decapitates our ability to innovate and progress, a determined concentration on the unfortunate events in memory blind us from opportunities of the moment.
If anything we should look to anticipate nostalgia, meaning, we should anticipate moments that will last indelibly in memory as treasured gifts. To do otherwise is to miss moments absent-mindedly, like scrolling uselessly on a phone while a child takes first steps.
While civilization goads us to become more and more preoccupied with distractions and plans for the future, and frail psychology ropes us into perseveration over a past of disappointment, we are cleaved from the real gift of living more and more.
The past is double edged in it’s painful reminder and it’s bittersweet remembrance, but as time slides by, our focus can learn from the experience of memory. Repeated exposure to something embarrassing or a mistake most certainly has far less of an ideal impact on our ability to navigate the future than does an appreciation for past good.
donating = loving
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Appreciation can be more than a feeling. Toss something in the jar if you find your thinking delightfully tinkered.