I once walked home from my bus stop in the midst of a gentle yet commanding snowfall. In the snow I watched the echo of myself be left behind with every footfall. I was struck at the brevity of each moment, at the complex simplicity of time. In my past, I could see myself leaving an audible trace on the world. In the present, I had little comprehension of the significance each step would have on the trail behind me. In my future, a distant goal enshrouded by snowfall, and a blank journey waiting to be traversed. My present moment, beyond precious and yet gone in an instant, snatched by the ever-present past. This moment and each moment beyond, while short, merits such a true love, a love at first life.
The immensity of love, such an intense caress of emotion on my heart, is the kind that makes me smile for no reason but for lack of having a reason to not. This is the love that blossoms out of bravery – a courage to breathe in the rather ordinary smattering of moments that coagulate into life as if each individual moment has the best aroma ever to be smelled. To stop and smell the roses is to stop a routine not so much of ignorance but of ignoring – for in fact roses grow everywhere around us. In every moment there is an immense universe of truly deep beauty like that that lies in the petal of a single rose. Imagine, then, the significance of the lives we are honored to partake in. If every moment can be as full as a universe of moments and we have, simply put, an infinity of moments, then perhaps we have the key, the truth, dare I say.
I believe that in a moment lies a simple a truth. The characteristics that define a moment are infinitesimally small as well as indefinite in their constitution – any given moment exists once. This is the truth of life. We cannot relive moments and to regret a moment is to lose some number of moments in one’s future, moments that can never be changed, as they are lost to the past simply in their existence.
Do not let me frighten or discourage you, for we live in a world where there is profound depth, simplicity, and overwhelming loveliness. In each moment there is a world different than the world of the moment before. As I write this, the world is adjusting atomically, chemically, physically, emotionally, in every way possible, the world will change, and us in it. This moment is different than the moment before, for in this moment I am smiling as I immerse myself in the beauty of a new song, in the heartbeat of human passion that has made such incredible sounds, sounds that change the world, my world.
The key is not to fabricate incredible moments that we surround ourselves with but to appreciate the moments we have, as they are unique and beautiful like any other. The indiscriminate truth in life is that the future is open, unknown, blinding in its brilliance.
In a world where millions of snowflakes fell around me, I found a thought I at once treasured, an idea that I was sure I must keep safe until it developed. As I have grown, I have kept this moment close to my heart, and now I share it with you. In my snowy winter wonderland, what was my role? I have discovered that my role in this journey is to relish the truly immense reverence I have for each and every moment, given that it is my moment to live and that I can live it as me, Faolan.
The world is wide open. I encourage you to ruminate as I have and beleaguer and eventually conquer any resistance to accepting and loving life as it is. If you can do this, I have utter confidence that moments will become brighter and more full or color, and that the significance of every little thing, from a blade of grass with a droplet of dew on the end, to a cloud with the face of a dragon, to a sky as purple as a cherry, to the laugh of a friend will become more valuable than is even comprehensible. For me, I live as if every moment were not my last, but as though I must recognize the inexorable truth that moments by their existence are gone even as they are born and should thus be given the respect they deserve: one of a past love, as every moment should be loved.
I wish you all much luck in the snowfalls of life and may you find roses abounding.