We are not living in eternity. We have only the present moment, sparkling like a star in our hands.

snowflake

Sparkling like a star

If we have doubted our ability to learn, we need doubt it no longer. If we ever had it in us to learn Greek or play the piano, we still have. If we ever had clever hands, we still have. But we are not living in eternity. We have only the present moment, sparkling like a star in our hands — and melting like a snowflake.

We’d better get started.

by Marie Beynon Lyons Ray
from The Best Years of Your Life (11 Dec 1952)
Chapter III – Education is for Adults
image – yellowcloud

Sparkling like a Star, Melting like a Snowflake

Marie Beynon Lyons Ray is writing about “old age,” and this section is about opportunities in adult education, from the perspective of 1952. Life expectancy was up to 65 years for men and 71 for women, giving Americans an additional 20 years, when compared to the first years of that century. New research seemed to indicate that an adult in their 60’s should be able to learn as well as a child of 12, belying the belief that education is for the young. The “we” here is adults, middle aged and older.

Maybe I’ll take up piano again. 🙂

Speaking of mortality, this book is so out of print it will probably never come back.

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3 Responses to “We are not living in eternity. We have only the present moment, sparkling like a star in our hands.”

  1. clarissa mcfairy Says:

    I don’t care if the book never comes back. I am happy with this extract. Simply beautiful. The present moment is all we have. What scares me is that so many snowflakes have melted while I have been in cyberspace.

  2. E. A. Able Says:

    Isn’t it ironic that this book itself is a snowflake?

  3. clarissa mcfairy Says:

    O, that is so true, Elizabeth.

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