Thursday, November 1, 2012

Since When Is Life Safe? The Sorrow of Time Travel.

It was the first of November, 2012 and the anxiety of the approach of 21 December was being acutely felt in the world.  Did it feel like 1999 all over again?  I started thinking about how many times in my life I had heard the world is coming to an end, and if life is going to end, what is the point?  Right?  I mean why do anything if it is all for nothing.  Why get out of bed?  Why plant crops?  Why raise children?  Why do we need to do absolutely anything if all that is waiting for us is one great big long dirt nap?  Life is vanity.  Someone else screwed it up and well, it is all damnation.    How would you spend your last 24 hours or days or years?  How would life go on if we all had the lifespan of a butterfly?  Well in terms of eternity, that is exactly what we have been allocated, but even a butterfly starts off as a caterpillar, spins a cocoon, waits and then eventually emerges from its shell as a butterfly.  Before it dies it mates profusely just to ensure that life does go on and it dies.  The interesting thing about butterflies is it doesn't question its existence, nor ponders about the meaning of life.  It just produces life and as a benefit, it also helps farmers with cross pollination.  The butterfly is just being a butterfly.
Published in The Allora Advertiser Issue No. 3220, 1 November 2012, p14

I love being around nature, and during my time here, I haven't really spent very much time on newspapers, television, nor even the internet.  Instead I have been writing, taking pictures, and exploring this small town in Australia.  I have spent a lot of time in meditation, talking to people and sharing stories with new found friends.  We have been learning from each other, and honestly it has infused life into my veins.  One of my new friends showed me the local paper for the market specials and in the advert section was a request for an adventurer.  I had to remind myself that the population is less than one thousand people, and someone posted a request that was completely original and paid for.    Someone was seeking a time traveler.  For a half-second, which is an eternity, I thought about calling up the fellow just to ask how many Allorians actually called.  Then again, I noticed the number was not a local number, but I decided not to reply.  The ad itself is enough for speculation.  Since Australia has been progressively changing their firearm laws and gun ownership has been challenged year by year since 2008, I wonder how many have their own weapons to bring.  Of course, I also love the line, "I have only done this once before."  Perhaps he was the gent that showed up in an all tweed suit trying to sabotage a Mountain Dew delivery to CERN and then subsequently disappeared without a trace from the psychiatric facility he was taken to.  So I decided to go on a time travel walk about to the old train station.

In many parts of the world, train travel is making a resurgence, actually train travel for many parts of the world has never died off.  As a matter of fact, newer, faster lines with improved technologies are most evident in Asia.  In the West, we just cannot seem to figure out that train lines shouldn't be privately owned.  There are some things that have to be managed for the service of all, but we can't seem to strike the right balance of what it means to live in a cooperative society.
 There is something striking about seeing the disuse and as I walked along the rails, I came to the end of the line and wondered why we were all so quick to assume that the automobile would be the answer to our transportation needs.
 And so I looked at how nature is overtaking this abandoned line that once hauled cattle and sheep and coal and possibly passengers on the fringes of the outback until one day there was no more profit to be made and it simply died.
 And I wondered about this time travel scenario.  Should someone go back in time and tell people not to build this line because it wouldn't be used one day?  Of course, I am not serious and I have no weapon with me.  Speculating on what a person would or could do if they went back into time is simply not taking responsibility for the life you have lived so far.
 It is better to remember that you cannot unmake your choices, but you can correct along the way.  You can make mistakes and you can choose to change.  It's better to be slow to anger and to speak up at the right times.  Isn't life about mastering yourself and not desiring to control the actions of others?

 So often, you hear about people wishing about what they could have or should have done.  You hear about people (maybe even yourself) that cite many things they wish they had not done at all.  Perhaps they were deceived, hurt or worse, perhaps they were the perpetrator.  My point is, even if you could undo one mistake in time, it doesn't change the person that made the mistake to begin with.
It might seem like it would be as simple as flipping a switch and all of your fortunes would change.  One thing that remains the same is you, your character.  No matter how much wealth, how much health, nor how much wisdom is acquired; that person is still the same with now other identities in place.  No matter how much wealth, fame or power one acquires in life; you still have to deal with yourself and no amount of time travel can change that.

No comments: