James Scully once said “How many dreams have we lost in our sleep while we were working, looking for bread in the rocks… How many birds have flown around our windows while we were playing with our chains in a postponed day?”
In life there is always something that catches our attention, a task or instance which consumes our existence. It is as if we are trying to grow up quickly, forgetting everything that is around us, focusing on the future with tunnel vision set ahead.
But why do we do this? What causes people, specifically corporate Americans, to forget to stop and smell the roses? We need to take a step backwards and re-learn how to live.
Children spend most of their young life talking to us, and ninety percent of the time we are not listening. The most comical and mind blowing concepts come out of the mouth of a 4-year-old and we and our ‘busy’ selves usually miss it.
They look at the world through the eyes of an observer, imagining and taking in everything as an adventure. And if you really want to know, these are from who we must learn.
I decided in high school to put aside the burning eyes of society and not let their judgement take away the imaginative free spirit I have come to be.
I still go Disneyland at the age of 20 and hug Mickey Mouse as if he were real. I watch Peter Pan fly around the Jolly Roger as Tink sprinkles her pixie dust and wish I could be whisked away to Neverland and never grow up.
I dance and sing to music wherever it may be and place myself in the world and lives of the stories that I read.
Watching the families walk around the ‘world of magic’ one can see that it is not only the children who are fascinated with the land, but that parents are as wide eyed as their 3-year-old.
I think the reason adults have children is not only to carry on their line or answer to the human instinct of procreation, but to become a child again.
How many times have we trampled the freshly sprout spring grass in ignorance of its existence. Or failed to notice the horizon as it glows from the setting sun and casts shadows across the earth.
We teach our children to wish upon a star or blow off the parachutes of a dandelion as they spur like miniature umbrellas through the air. And how many times have we read ‘Alice in Wonderland’ and encouraged them to talk to flowers and befriend the Cheshire Cat. But yet it is ‘silly’ if an adult is caught dancing to a cartoon.
As we go about our day simply going through the motions we are forgetting that life is still happening around us while we are ‘playing with our chains’. Unfortunately, life was not equipped with a pause button and many of us fail to realize we are not in control of the remote.
Aristotle said ‘Happiness is the meaning and purpose of life’ but how can we accomplish this if we cannot even stop our busy day to sit and observe.
Over the years I have come to know James Dean’s saying “Dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die today.” And I have come to live my life as religiously as the actor. For every day is not promised to come and the future is not set in stone.
Samantha Sincock, a junior journalism major, is editorial director and arts editor of the Campus Times. She can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.