Friday, 18 December 2009
Anarcho-Spirituality; Crimethinc; Death
Taken from 'Days of War, Nights of Love' by the genius Crimethinc lot over the pond. You can read the book online here
This article in particular always kicks me up the arse.
Warning; it might change your life.
Here's an exercise to try at home. You will need a working stopwatch, or another timepiece that measures seconds. Before you begin, seat yourself in a comfortable chair and loosen your clothing.
Watch the second hand as it passes around the face of the clock. Picture the moment of your death, perhaps many decades in the future, or perhaps only a few years or months (who can know?). Wait for the second hand to reach the starting point at the top of the clockface, and then watch as it records the passing of one minute of your life. Now imagine the clock counting down the minutes of your life to the moment of your death. Try this exercise picturing this moment a few decades in the future, then repeat it picturing the moment next year. Repeat it picturing the moment of your death next month. Next week. Tonight. After all, you never know.
Now observe the minute and hour hands on the clock. What were you doing at this time twenty four hours ago? Forty eight hours ago? One month ago? What will you be doing at this time in a week?
Imagine that the moment of your death is one month away. Consider--if you knew that this was true, what would you be doing right now? What would you be doing at this time tomorrow? Repeat this step, imagining your death to be one year away. Does this make very much difference in your thoughts about what you would do today and tomorrow if you knew the date of your death?
Compare your activities over the last twenty four hours to the activities you would have chosen if you had known that you would leave this world in one month or one year. Compare your activities over the last month, the last year, the last decade to those you would have chosen if you had known that on this day you would have only thirty days or twelve months left to live. How different would your life have been if you had known the date of your approaching death? Would you be ready to die in a month or a year, having lived the life that you have?
Chances are, at least as far as we all know, that most of the people who read this text and participate in this exercise will live for many more years or even decades afterwards. But still, look at the second hand of the stopwatch, and follow it as it records the passing minutes, counting down the minutes of your life that remain to you as they slip away. Are you living the life that you want to live? Are you living a life that, at any given moment, you could look back upon with satisfaction if you suddenly realized that it was about to end? Are you living the sort of life that you would wish upon a human being, a life that is exciting and full, a life that is well spent, every minute of it? If the answer is no, what can you do in the time that still remains to you--however long or short that may be--to make your life more like the life you would like to live? For we all do have only a limited amount of time granted to us in this world--and so we should use it with this in mind.