Leave the World Better than When You Found It

During our final moments one can only wish to be surrounded by loved ones with a mind full of jovial memories. Approaching the final destination it seems inevitable to ponder our life, internal dialogue weighing positive action against disingenuous conduct. Individuals observing an immoral existence will often manifest delusions to erode responsibility, building a barrier between actual reality and the expiring entity’s quest for contentment. An individual may die deceiving themselves about their noble temperament, but their true worth will reside in their residual affect on others.

The meaning of life varies for all and we define our disposition by committing to an ideology or endeavour. Every individual creates their own purpose, yet if we want to live up to our name as nature temporary manifestation its auspicious to aim to leave the earth better than when we found it.

Impacting Reality

On the daily stroll towards Hades one must stop and comprehend how their life will be perceived after it ceases; will admiration stem from wealth or morality? Athleticism or integrity? Occupation or virtue? As vitality dissolves into the narrative of history how one will be remembered becomes the prodigious thought.

Falsehoods adorn people in the appearance of satisfaction, but true serenity loiters around individuals who are compelled to uphold and improve their environment. Living a life that improves the world doesn’t require an astonishing career or outstanding abilities, it is a person who accepts the hand dealt by cosmos and endeavours to live candidly, guided by sound connotation of morality and authenticity.

A fruitful way people observe their impact on reality comes from their offspring. Having a child is arguably one of the most detrimental decisions a person can make towards the planet, therefore it’s propitious, if not expected if entering into this arrangement the mind of the infant be sculpted with a critical and gracious chisel. Parents blessed with babies harness the capability to mould their morals, ethics and values according to what they consider conducive to a honourable existence. Giving their spawn every advantage to push past the horizon of their own life is a universal goal of parenting; commitment to the task isn’t taken lightly. 

A noble human sentiment, the capacity to dedicate one’s life to others is not only witnessed in parents but also teachers, coaches, nurses, volunteers, activists; it resides in everyone, although not all will seek light upon it. While actions may indicate selflessness there is a selfish tinge to helping others – it makes you feel good.

The Avaricious Household

Public figures concealing despicable natures before death have been scratched from history, a barrage of slander smearing every last ounce of dignity the name once possessed. Accolades and awards will be nothing more than identifiers of the past, our affect on those we leave behind will be our real legacy. Hear that Savile?

It cannot be stated that generating an inflated bank account to bequeath to one’s family isn’t honourable, but how the money was acquired and what time and experience were lost in its procurement is salient to meriting admiration. When meaning is derived from the acquisition of capital a person is susceptible to depravity, others becoming abstractions rather than people. Recurrently, the children of affluent individuals have insatiable approaches to living; in trying to engender a better life for their offspring they instead strip connection to reality and fellow humans, unless they occupy equal or higher social status.

The self-centred approach to life will provide some good moments, although they are like the decadence of eating obscene amounts of chocolate. Endorphins are activated as one shovels in more, yet when luxury turns to gluttony sickness always follows. The disease of avarice ensures deluded perception blinding avenues to true contentment – when someone is constantly craving enough will never suffice.

“Riches do not exhilarate us so much in their possession as they torment us with their loss.” Epicurus’ remark holds its veracity thousands of years on. The more one acquires the more one has to lose, skewing an unfavourable slant on outsiders. In pursuing greed people are destined to continually quest for more. Never satisfied with what they hold, they’re always envious of what’s in the palms of others.

Bystander to Active Force 

Oscar Wilde wrote, “Some cause happiness wherever they go, some whenever they go”; we must decide for ourselves which we would like to be. By the time the reaper rolls around, memories flood us with the water needed to grow an acute eye and inspect who we actually were.

During life many seldom reflect on what their future self would say about their course selection, overshadowed by the immediate impact their choices make on their reality. It is more frequently the little decisions made greatly shaping our disposition – it is how we arrive at our judgement not the judgment itself. If one loses sight of their place in earth’s orbit the mind begins to think the sun’s circling them.

With this indulgent attitude people neglect anything that doesn’t concern them, “Why focus on the them over there when it doesn’t affect me here?” a common thought accompanying the mentality. Unbeknownst to these people in helping others we actually helps ourselves. By enriching the lives of others one stops being a bystander and alters into an active force.

The happiness found in altruism is boundless; whether helping a grand parent with a smart phone, taking an eager dog for a walk, helping in a food kitchen or planning a surprise party, taking time and investing it into the lives of others nourishes the soul. Whilst material depreciates from the moment it is exists, altruism lingers in the cosmos’ ethos. 

Comparative philosopher Julian Baggini wrote, “ If you recognize yourself in another, treating the other as yourself becomes not an abstract duty but second nature.” This statement is also true with nature herself.

Everything living is Gaia’s temporary manifestation and allowing her process to flourish is essential to all existence. One can show nature gratitude and redeem humanity by picking up the decay caused by senseless individuals who believe it’s appropriate to litter her magnificence. With this type of behaviour we transform into active agents of change, our eyes attune to witness the interdependence of all and are humbled to be part of such an elaborate and intimate experience.

Everyone has the opportunity to become more than themselves by acting in the interest of the planet’s current and future inhabits. In this symbiotic reality if one believes they don’t owe the world anything vanity prevents them from attaining anything of substance.

As the reaper’s hand draws near those knowing their positive influence on others will welcome their conclusion with a cheerful temperament, the opposing individual shuttering in fear at losing everything they’ve exchanged life for.

“And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make.” Put simply by The Beatles, it is what we give to life which we get back from it. By lightening the burden carried by others we deepen the soul and mature into truly sentient beings. 

Image Source: Feliks K

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