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QW 040312 “How we will feel in the future”

Today’s David Brooks article posted The New York Times was really a good read. The topic of the article is, in my understanding, about one of the “Life Reports” that David asked readers over 70 to send him. He expounded on its author, Charles Darwin Snelling and the importance and the power of respecting the future to people of all ages.

The following is one of the most impressive parts in the article:

The fact is, we are all terrible at imagining how we will feel in the future. We exaggerate how much the future will be like the present. We underestimate the power of temperament to gradually pull us up from the lowest lows. And if our capacities for imagining the future are bad in normal times, they are horrible in moments of stress and suffering.

Besides the beauty of the parallelism of “We exaggerate” and “We underestimate”, I’d like to insist that the message itself is so powerful and universal to people from all walks of life. Haven’t you ever wanted to quit something that you can’t possibly do so, or got completely sick and tired of dealing with someone or something that you can’t possibly avoid facing? Haven’t you ever been on the verge of losing yourself and any kinds of hope for the future, or been confined with the thought that nothing would change forever and everything would remain as terrible as it is now ? I have. And I’ll probably never grow out of these sissy, fruitless, troublesome sentiments. Okay, then, here’s David has to say, quote, “We underestimate the power of temperament to gradually pull us up from the lowest lows”. Yes, I have the tendency to think that the future will be just like the present, and the sentiments that I have now will last forever. No, they will not. But, am I the only one who thinks so?

In fact there happened something that made me unhappy this morning. I was not “that” hopeless, but a certain grievance arose within me. Now late at night, I’m writing today’s QW piece. I might’ve not yet completely overcome such sentiment, but I’m feeling okay enough to let the happening go off of me and say to myself “That’s life.” with a smile.

(45 minutes / 379 words)

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Aya

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