I want to live, however briefly, knowing that my life is finite. Mortality gives meaning to human life, Captain. Peace, love, friendship – these are precious because we know they cannot endure.– Data to Picard in the final episode of season 1 of Star Trek:Picard
I always enjoy these glimmers of real wisdom in mainstream culture.
In a conventional sense, it’s helpful to take in that our life is finite. It can help us face – and bring presence into – any fears we have around it and find more peace with it. It can help us appreciate our life more. It can help us find genuine appreciation for what’s here and now, even if some of it may not be exactly as we wish. It can help us reprioritize and find what’s really important to us. And it can help us reorient and allow more time for what’s important to us.
A simple exercise here is to visualize our death as vividly as we can. Take it in. Ask ourselves how I would have liked to live differently. And then see how our live can be different now in this new context.
We can also explore our finite life in immediacy. Any ideas of past, future, and present are ideas. What’s here and now is all we have. And it’s always fresh and new. Not only is no moment alike any other moment. There is just this ONE moment. This always changing timeless presence.
My life is finite in that it’s just this timeless presence. And that timeless presence is infinitely rich. It includes everything I have ever experienced and everything I will ever experience. It also includes any images and thoughts I have about past, future, and present – and any images and thoughts about anything.
- I want to live, however briefly, knowing that my life is finite
- always enjoyable to see glimmers of real insight in mainstream entertainment, useful insights
- within stories
- know we will die, know what we have now will all be gone, know that everyone and everything we know will be gone
- gives poignancy, a different context, appreciation,
- within immediacy
- this experience is unique, wasn’t before and will never return
- even more poignant, even more immediate