“An awareness of one’s mortality, can lead you to wake up and live an authentic, meaningful life.” -Bernie Siegel
Mortality is something we don’t like to think about, much less talk about. But part of the human experience is to understand that at some point we all reach the finish line of life. It arrives either with sudden shock and loss, or is defined by a gradual letting go of this world. And as we arrive at the finish line, we will have had the ability to leave a lasting legacy, a vivid memory of ourselves.
It can be a positive and empowering thing to reflect on our own mortality. Often when faced with the prospect of death, people grow and even become stronger psychologically. Mortality awareness also invokes a feeling of, “I want to be remembered for doing great things before I die.” That is a powerful sentiment and a motivating factor for many people to live authentic and inspired lives. For most of us, leaving some sort of legacy for our loved ones to remember us by is a driving force behind our actions.
The more engaging and intertwined our lives have been, the larger the legacy and the more timeless the memory that we leave behind. Hopefully, throughout our lives, we have all been enriched by many wonderful people who have made an impression, an indelible mark on us. In having known them, they may have elevated our lives with their special connection and significant meaning. They may have changed our understanding of love and friendship; and we are certainly better for having known them.
I have found that certain buildings and spaces can be such powerful experiences, that they too leave their indelible mark upon us. With that impression, they become timeless, enduring, and sustained in our memory. These buildings enrich our experiences bringing beauty and aesthetic awareness to the forefront. (I’ve put some awe-inspiring building photos at the end of the blog, so don’t miss them!)
Leaving a legacy becomes a way to transcend death, which is why placing a high value on internal development is so critical. There is an intrinsic fear that at the end of your life you will ask yourself, “was I really here/present? Did I enjoy my journey? Did I live my life in the most authentic way possible?” If you’re asking yourself these questions right now while reading this, it’s not too late! As long as you’re still here, there’s still time to make changes in your life to begin leading your most fulfilling and authentic life possible – to leave a legacy of inspiration for your loved ones to remember and to follow.
We are each given a purpose for our lives. Whether you have discovered yours or not, it is there just under the surface waiting to be awakened. Your individual purpose is meant to be your legacy, a significant contribution to this world for your time on earth. Embrace the possibilities that emerge when you discover your life’s purpose, and allow it to guide your most inspired and authentic life.
Searching for depth and meaning in our lives is essential to the human experience. People and spaces can come into our lives that literally inspire and change us. It is this quest for significance and personal fulfillment of not only our physical needs, but those needs of our souls as well that can transform a mundane existence to one that is profound, authentic, and unforgettable.
Until next time, stay inspired!