Model year 1949 may be part of it, even if I just made the cut. (I’m sure you’re the older of us two.) Cosmically, all the celestial bodies were standing in a particular relationship to us, a relationship that is ever-changing on top of that, and one that never lets us go.
With the first sentence I couldn’t agree more. On the second, we differ. At every moment of our existence we find ourselves in a personal, extended, societal, planetary, even cosmic configuration that demands that we choose. What we do as humans is choose. Those choices may be limited, and they most often are, and in ways that we can’t even imagine, but we can choose. Free – as in free will, not free beer – is not whether we can choose whatever we want, rather it is that we can choose at all. I think freedom is great, but I don’t believe for a moment that it is as great – in the sense of unlimited potentialities – as most people like to think. We don’t have a good grasp on what “free” means.
And only you can decide that. But you have to make the decision then, on the spot, and I believe as consciously as possible (whatever that means). Most of us most of the time look back at choices we made and tell ourselves they were the best we could have made under the circumstances. But they weren’t. We’re often just rationalizing our good intentions, especially when we find ourselves on a given road to hell. They weren’t the best decisions we could have made because we didn’t know then, and are only getting a glimpse now of, what we might have done differently.
There is little I can do about those past decisions. There’s hardly anything we can do about anything that has past. That’s what makes the past the past. But, until they put me in my “earth furniture” (a literal translation of how former East Germans referred to caskets, or urns … Erdmöbel) I can do a hell of a lot about how consciously I make those decisions that are still remaining to be made. We may be wherever we are whenever we are, but we’re not mere pawns of fate.
When I was young, what I (thought) I wanted was much grander in scale and scope (or so I sometimes thought) than what I (I think I might want) want these days. Back then, as the saying goes, we had time to kill; these days time’s killing us. But I refuse to let that put me under undue pressure.