Very thoughtful piece, Geoffrey. I couldn’t agree more with this statement — that there is more to life than the here and now.
Back in 2016, I was fortunate enough to have an experience that taught me this firsthand — I participated in a medical course at the University of Minnesota in which we completed a human cadaver dissection.
Apologies if you have a weak stomach, as this topic isn’t for everyone, but it truly was an incredible experience, unlike anything else I have ever done.
Although the purpose of our time in laboratory was purely scientific, in the aftermath I found quite a bit of moral and spiritual value from it.
Aside from the scientific education, I learned quite a bit, but mostly I was immensely humbled.
If you happen to be interested, the article is published here.
Either way, it really convinced me that there is more to this life. What that is, I don’t know. But our tangible existence on this Earth cannot simply be it. I don’t know much about the spiritual world, but I know that in one way or another, humans leave their mark and continue to make an impact, even after their bodies have gone.
Both quotes you mention — “the first day of the rest of your life,” and “It ought to be the business of every day to prepare for our final day,” resonate with me. Although they appear to represent polar opposites, they may also share a common purpose. Both philosophies encourage an optimistic viewpoint and point to making the most of each and every day.
Very thought-provoking article. I enjoyed it!