Sunday, May 29, 2011

Measuring a Year

This clip is from the film version of the Pulitzer and Tony Award winning musical "Rent" about Bohemians in the East Village of New York City struggling with life, love and AIDS, and the impacts they have on America.  The opening song "Seasons of Love" speaks to the passage of a year in the life of a man or a woman.  Following are a couple of verses from that song.

Seasons of Love

Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Moment's so dear

Five hundred twenty-five thousand

Six hundred minutes
How do you measure, measure a year?

Measuring a year is a difficult thing.  By what yardstick do we line out the miles traveled, the passing moments?  We try to meet basic needs as Maslov so aptly depicted in his hierarchy.  If we’re lucky enough to have access to food, water and shelter we might just have the energy left to meet our psychological needs such as love and comfort.  For those fortunate enough to pass those hurdles, there might be enough stamina left to give back to the world in a meaningful way - sharing our gifts, being a friend, making life better for others. 

Measuring a year means something different to every person on the planet.  If we get up each day and vow to do one thing that improves the plight of another human being then the day has served a purpose bigger than ourselves.  Living with integrity serves a purpose.  One smile, an outreached hand, a warm embrace – they all have meaning.  We can’t all be Mother Teresa, but we can live with a heart full of love. 

Five hundred twenty-five thousand six hundred minutes seems like a lot, but it can pass in the blink of an eye.  What will you do with your year?  What will I do with my year?

Tomorrow I will wake up and see what unfolds.  I can't do everything, but maybe I will do one thing that makes a difference.

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