Life is never that serious and it would do us a lot of good to remember that. Here is why I think so:
If life was serious enough, it would be permanent, just so we can know that everything we have worked hard for will last forever. But it is not. In fact, if it is not worse, we could cease to be alive any time of the day, anywhere in the world and in the most unexpected ways. For example, I knew someone who was so happy to be alive, the life of the party, abundant, and boastful about her travels and adventures, only for her to die in the most horrific way possible-with her head severed from the rest of her body in a dreadful accident. Did she see it coming? I doubt that. Will we see our end coming? No, because nobody receives a warning when our time is up. It just is when it is.
I think taking life seriously is detrimental to our health and wellbeing. Life wasn’t meant to be taken seriously. It was meant to be enjoyed without plans for the future or regrets about our past. In fact, I find that whenever anyone worries about saving for the future or planning for it, they lose out on the precious present moment.
I tested this theory on an ant that was walking about on my desk as I watched it curiously. I wondered where the ant was going and what it was thinking as it went round and round on the desk. Is it possible that it smelled the biscuits I was eating. I took tiny crumbs and sprinkled them on the desk to see if it would be guided by its senses to find them and sure it did. What struck me perhaps, was what happened soon thereafter. Once the ant had found some of the crumbs, it picked just one and went off to somewhere-perhaps, to call its friends over to the treasure it had found. I waited excitedly, as several more ants arrived all excited to see the crumbs. One ant in particular made me smile as it chose the biggest of them all, four times its size and struggled to pull it on one of its ends towards itself in tiny determined steps. Soon after, another ant joined in to help it carry the oversized mountainous crumb to God knows where. My question was, Why are they not eating them right there and then if they were hungry? Had it been me, I would eat to my fill first and foremost, then think about carrying some back to wherever it was they were intent on going.
A careful study of the other ants which were now gathered at the crumbs revealed some insightful wisdom. Some ants picked whatever they found first and went on their merry way, thankful for the blessing. Others picked one then another and another, and had they met with some more on their way out they probably would have picked that too. I laughed because that reminded me of us humans, we cannot have enough and it helped to know that greed is a natural instinct and not just a sign of our descent to a life of discontent.
Remember, the ant that carried the biggest crumb four times its size, well, I was astonished to find that even in the ants kingdom, ambition is ever present. That tiny little creature took on a challenge bigger than itself and didn’t get scared or worried that it couldn’t handle it. Same way, as humans we should dare to take on challenges with as much bravery as that little guy.
I wanted so very much to test the theory about living in the present moment and how that can determine whether or not we enjoy the opportunities which come in the here and now or we miss them because we are worried about tomorrow, or saving for a rainy day. I gave the ants a few more seconds before I removed the crumbs. Eventually, I was going to have to remove them anyway, because I use the desk all the time to write and read and I couldn’t have all the ants in the world show up on my desk. A few seconds after, I realized that more ants had now come, to get the crumbs which were no longer there. Some of the ants were the same ones which had seen the crumbs but didn’t eat them because either, they were thinking of saving them or going some where to get reinforcements. Either way, they missed their chance. The lesson here is that we should live in the present moment and relish in what it offers instead of worrying about tomorrow or later because later is not ours. Today, right here right now is all we have. We could be throwing our chance away by thinking or hesitating, both costing us our present and most likely our future, for how could you have a better future without a well-lived present moment?
I wish to let everyone out there know that life is not as serious as we give it credit for. Life offers us only one promise and guarantee, which is our present moment. It is up to us how we choose to live in it. It does not promise us tomorrow because it has its own events. If we live like this, a day at a time, I am sure we will live happier and more fulfilled.