Consulting Oracle 32
Still I have to say that on some level, I am no more advanced in discovering the meaning of being 32... of being any age for that matter or in understanding how life works in general. So I turned to the Internet, our modern day oracle. When you type in 32, here are some of the things you get:
- A huge close up of someone's face apparently selling outwear: http://thirtytwo.com
- A cool looking lounge in Philadelphia and Atlantic City: www.32lounge.com
- A poetry blog (Neat!): www.32poems.com
- A colt .32 pistol from Guns America (Not Neat)
- 32 inch TVs, 32 GB memory cards, Channel 32, other general measurements
- Online games: www.32.com
So generally, typing 32 into Google did not provide any great enlightenment or philosophical discoveries... until I came across 32 Keys: About Life. A little skeptical of what is actually on the other side of a www, I ventured anyway and came across a listing of different topics. Seeing as my post last year on my birthday had a lot to do with fear, that is the first topic I clicked.
The advice comes from Grandpa Ken (I already liked the idea of grandfatherly advice, having lost my last living grandparent almost 9 years ago... and our modern society severely underestimates the wisdom of elders). Within the post, there is a quote: "For it is not death or hardship that is a fearful thing, but the fear of death or hardship." - Epictetus (55-135) followed by this advice:
Try to free yourself from guilt or shame. If you have erred badly correct it or forget it. Talk it over with a friend. Look for good in yourself and in others. Avoid large doses of hyped bad news reporting and look for some good stories... There is only one you, unique and deserving of a good life, so feel good about yourself just the way you are.
Pretty fantastic advice if I do say so myself. And if that isn't enough, in Grandpa Ken's bio, his 2010 entry reads:
Aging has its special problems, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't have a lot of enjoyment. The October - December years can be a time when you are able to say "I don't care" about certain problems. So many of life's anxieties and troubles lessen or fade away in the later years. Serenity should prevail. And there are still new things to try. Like some of this new technology, seeing new areas, meeting new people, taking more time to appreciate what is free and naturally all around us.
Exactly the attitude I want to have as I get older, and though 32 is nowhere near old, now is a good time to start the habit. So on the last day of being 31, I want the title of Grandpa Ken's post to be my theme for 32 (and onwards): "Be happy while you're living." How do we so often overlook this in daily life?
I set out looking for wisdom and meaning today, and I don't think I could have asked for more than that. Thanks Grandpa Ken.
It turns out that, in leading people to greater wisdom, perhaps Google isn't such a bad oracle.