Do not grow old, no matter how long you live. Never cease to stand like curious children before the Great Mystery into which we were born. – Albert Einstein
Aging is part of all life cycles. Are cells are constantly being recycled and remade. When I was young I read somewhere that every cell in the human body is replaced after seven years. I don’t know if that is true, but it did give me something to think about. In a university philosophy class, our instructor hit us with the conundrum of George Washington’s axe. If a museum replaces the handle on Washington’s axe (the one he used to cut down the mythological cherry tree) is it still the same axe? If the axe head then deteriorates and has to be replaced, is it still the same axe?
What is the root of identity over time? What qualities identify your unique self as you age? The human body sags, bags, and wrinkles. Hairs become gray or white if they don’t fall out entirely. Teeth crumble, arteries harden and numerous illness can ravage the physical body. But what remains of the kid you once were? Where are you little boy, or girl, who now has “grown up”?
Beneath the matured body, please allow the imagination and curiosity run and play throughout your day. Relish in this marvelous, living window onto the Great Mystery. Laugh, and smile at the fact you are still here – now – RIGHT NOW. As you get older, so many of your acquaintances’ oaths are cut short. The road is hard, but the journey does not have to be a burden. Your life, this minute, is a miracle. You can choose to age with grace and good humor.
There is multi-layered rich in texture beauty all around. Timbre is a musical term used to describe the unique characteristic qualities of a sound, whether it is produced by a choir, an orchestra, or solo instrument. Your life has timbre. Take pride in those unique characteristics that make you happy to be you. Bring those sparkles of youthful insight to the forefront. Look upon the Great Mystery and understand you are part of this miracle of miracles and it is part of you.
Do not let the sun set too soon. Summon the curious child into your heart and make your world anew. This is not a financial investment or unpaid bill. But it is a debt you should pay to your past self who looked forward to these days. Be your true self and live each day alight with curiosity.