For centuries now, we’ve all heard the term “carpe diem.” But is that enough to live life to the fullest in the 21st century?
The term first originated in Roman poet Horace’s poetry collection, The Odes sometime in 23 BC. In context, the full line in which it appeared has been translated as “Seize the day; trust tomorrow e’en as little as you may.”
When Horace wrote that poem, life was not nearly as fast-paced as today. News around the world, and even locally, was not available at tip of our fingers. Today, if there’s an explosion somewhere in a European country, we’ll find out about it within a few minutes of it happening, even residing in North America. In Horace’s times, that was not possible so it made sense to think about life from day to today. Even local news took time to gain prominence.
But in today’s day and age, when communication between all parts of the world has increased ten-fold, forget days; we don’t even know what’s going to happen in the next five minutes.
And that’s why I always like to say “carpe secondus” or seize the second. Every hour, every minute, every second is precious. With the chaos we imbibe every moment, be it our own or through the news, even a fragment of time should never be taken for granted. Things could change, literally, in the blink-of-an-eye.
I’ve touched upon this in a few of my previous articles but one thing I try to do these days is show gratitude for even the tiniest and ostensibly insignificant things. For example, when I finish taking a shower, I silently thank God for the hot water I just had. Off the bat, doing so may seem a bit ludicrous or overdoing it.
But then, think about how many people in this world do not have access to hot water with a turn of a knob. Think about homeless people. Think about people who still reside in remote villages where to have hot water; it has to be warmed up on the stove like we do to cook something.
That’s exactly what I mean by “carpe secondus;” being aware of every second in our lives, taking advantage of it and being thankful for it.
What do you think about applying the term “carpe secondus” to your daily lives? Do you agree that we all tend to take our time for granted sometimes? Why or why not? Share your thoughts and experiences by commenting below on our secure servers.
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