This line is a part of a very large circle
“Every animal leaves traces of what it was; man alone leaves traces of what he created.”
One of my biggest ambitions in life is to leave a trace behind, to make sure that my life counted in one way or another. I want to make sure that before I am done living, that I made a difference in someone’s life and that the world is slightly a better place due to my existence. My biggest fear is to live a life of pure enjoyment and to fail in achieving something more than just for myself and my family. I often think about evolution and our place as human beings in this world. We are similar in so many ways to other animals. We eat, sleep, play, love, protect, provide for ourselves and enjoy this gift of life. So what differentiates us? What makes us superior to other species? One would say that it is our intelligence, our capacity to think and analyze and our huge depth of understanding. But is this enough to make us superior to other species? Is it enough that we have such great capacities and sometimes we live such simple lives without a higher goal than that of providing for ourselves and our own families? Is it enough when our society is suffering from so much distress, loneliness, poverty and alienation?
From my point of view, I think that action and mobilization is the only thing that can entitle us to say that we are superior to other beings. It is not enough if we are intelligent, capable creatures able of doing grand things, and yet we do nothing in order to change the world around us. Action is the only proof that we are grander. All these qualities are not enough if they are not put to good use. It is not enough that our thinking capacity is so enormous, unless it is put into action! I believe that the only reason why humans are more evolved than any other species is because we can CREATE, we can ACHIEVE, and we can ACCOMPLISH. And these are the questions that torment me every day and night. What will I do, what will I achieve, what will I accomplish to leave this world a better place, to feel that I lived up to many capacities as a human being? How will I count more in this world than any other animal? Why are we considered superior to animals if we don’t do more than just living our lives without the concern of others?
But this is not as easy as it sounds. Sometimes even if you act, it feels too small, too insignificant, too banal and pointless. You feel like the world could do with or without you and that your existence cannot always be as revolutionary as you want it to be. That your efforts are just bread crumbs. And just when I’m ready to give up, to let go, to become apathetic and indifferent to everything around me other than myself, art saves me. Yesterday, my husband showed me one of Yoko Ono’s art works which says “This line is a part of a very large circle”. Sometimes my efforts seem like a flat line on the heart monitor. No pulse, no ups and downs, no changes, not one single difference. But what if this line (my line) is just a part of a very large circle? What if the circle is so, so big that my efforts seem like a flat line only when looking at it up close. Maybe if we look at the bigger picture, we won’t find our efforts so pointless. Maybe, they count no matter how much others try to put you down and say that you don’t count and that you won’t change anything in the end.
One thing is certain. I don’t want to leave a trace of what I was, I want to leave a trace of what I created and achieved, something that it’s beyond me and my perishable body and soul.
Artist credits: Yoko Ono
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