Time Capsule #80
Welcome to the Time Capsule — a weekly newsletter that serves as both my public journal and personal scrapbook. I write about the things on my mind and close to my heart in hopes that those who read it find value and enjoyment in it, and perhaps some solace too.
💭 Quote(s) of the Week
Fear, uncertainty and discomfort are your compasses toward growth.
✏️ On Life Purpose & Design
Finding one’s purpose is often considered the most important task in life. The idea that there is something, or someone, that was perfectly designed for you is a straightforward and easy belief to subscribe to, particularly when you are young and have the full horizon of life to look forward to.
It’s important to think deeply about the big questions. What you want from work — and love — and what you want your ideal life to look like. I ask myself those questions all the time: it helps me move toward the things I enjoy and value, and away from things that pull me away from that. But I am also starting to think that too much optimization and design in pursuit of one’s ‘purpose’ makes it hard to experience the beauty of the world. There is value in consistency and routine and discipline, but to be spontaneous outside of the confines of a calendar — to look at the sky and the stars, to spend time with loved ones, to enjoy a long walk on a summer’s day — adds a richness to life that is hard to schedule. Sometimes I think about what life would be like before clocks; when the sun was your alarm. It was most certainly a more human existence.
I am growing my appreciation for human connection. To get to know the deepest crevasses of another’s mind and soul. There is an unspoken language between two connected souls that no dictionary can describe — it is more powerful than any of the thousand languages spoken throughout human history. I want to become fluent in that unspoken language.
📸 Photo of the Week
The education of a man is never completed until he dies.
Robert E. Lee
📖 Book of the Week — Nicomachean Ethics by Aristotle
Aristotle is one of the greatest thinkers in human history who strongly influenced philosophical thought, particularly in the Middle Ages.
The ideas in Nicomachean Ethics, his most popular work, address the most pressing questions of human existence: how to live a good life; the nature of pleasure, virtue, and happiness; friendship; society & the state; and reason. Whether we realize it or not, his ideas continue to exert their effects on modern society.
💡 Food for Thought
The heart does not have well-oiled hinges: it must be broken to be opened.
🔭 Sunday Best
Laborem Exercens — or Through Work, a papal encyclical on the unique role of work in the human experience. By Pope John Paul II.
Work is one of the characteristics that distinguish man from the rest of creatures, whose activity for sustaining their lives cannot be called work. Only man is capable of work, and only man works, at the same time by work occupying his existence on earth. Thus work bears a particular mark of man and of humanity, the mark of a person operating within a community of persons.
Sonnet 129 — Th'expense of spirit in a waste of shame by William Shakespeare
Th' expense of spirit in a waste of shame
Is lust in action; and till action, lust
Is perjured, murd'rous, bloody, full of blame,
Savage, extreme, rude, cruel, not to trust,
Enjoyed no sooner but despisèd straight,
Past reason hunted; and, no sooner had
Past reason hated as a swallowed bait
On purpose laid to make the taker mad;
Mad in pursuit and in possession so,
Had, having, and in quest to have, extreme;
A bliss in proof and proved, a very woe;
Before, a joy proposed; behind, a dream.
All this the world well knows; yet none knows well
To shun the heaven that leads men to this hell.
The 95 Theses — Martin Luther. A seminal moment in Christian history — much of what we consider “common knowledge” with respect to personal autonomy in the religious/spiritual context was a direct result of the 95 Theses. He mainly speaks out against the abuse of indulgences (i.e., letters sold by the church to the common people to reduce the amount of punishment one has to undergo for sins)
37. Any true Christian, whether living or dead, participates in all the blessings of Christ and the church; and this is granted him by God, even without indulgence letters.
Thanks! See you next week.