In this constantly shifting and expanding universe exists time. We all have that impending expiration date on our mortal bodies, hovering invisible above our heads.
Ironically enough, it is this expiration date which drives us. We understand the limited nature of our existence at some point or another and decide to do something about it. We want to make changes, shake things up and leave our mark on the world.
Embrace our experiences but don’t cling to them. Fully appreciate the majesty of the moment with the knowledge that everything is subject to change. Soon the moment will pass and we must be prepared to embrace whatever comes next.
Nothing is forever. All things come to an end. You can’t escape the inevitability of time. We are all subject to its power. Each fleeting moment is a blessing, an opportunity to do something. Seizing these tiny seemingly insignificant moments could have ripples of effect on the world which are just beyond our ability to comprhend. It is all about possibilty, seizing a moment and making the best of what’s given to you.
“…nothing is inherently fixed, not even our own identity. No matter how bad the situation, anything is possible. We can do whatever we want to do, create whatever world we want to live in, and become whatever we want to be.” ~Thanissaro Bhikkhu
The Temporary Nature of Everything
When I was in undergrad I did a lot of research on graffiti. I came across this incredible quote which led me to a major epiphany and eventually, in conjunction with the Body Worlds exhibit, to rethink my entire senior thesis work.
“One of the other beautiful things about graffiti is it’s temporary nature, it’s creative futility. Walls are painted over again and again, memories are lost, re-written, and nothing stays around for long. The most inspiring, life affirming aspect of graffiti is the process; the act of doing, of engagement and application. Leaving a mark, taking your space, making it your own, even if just for a fleeting moment, has many positive parallels with a broader approach and attitude towards everyday life.” ~Simon Armstrong
Andy Goldsworthy is an artist I researched during this process who deals with temporal nature in his work. His art encompasses the creative futility Armstrong refers to. Using all materials found in nature, Goldsworthy approaches a project with no delusions of it remaining in a gallery in its pristine, mint condition for generations to come. He truly appreciates that his work takes place within a set time span. Whether it is a line in the grass from walking or icicles melded together, his work is defined by its brief existence.
There is no such thing as ‘doesn’t matter‘. If I could eliminate one phrase from the english language that would be it. Saying something doesn’t matter might be the lowest form of insult known to man. It all matters. No matter what you do there are consequences. Just because something is temporary in nature doesn’t mean it is any less significant.
We exist in a world that is constantly changing. The notion of a ‘still life’ is a paradox. We can’t be both still and alive; the two ideas contradict one another. Seize the day and make the most of every moment. You never know which one will be your last…
The Power of One
It just one individual to make a little change, to start caring a bit more. A single spark ignites the inferno. With the understanding that we are not alone in the universe and in spite of the difficulties looming over us, in spite of the misunderstanding constantly plaguing communication, progress is always possible. All it takes is that single, minuscule spark.