Another year has begun to close its curtains on me. I sipped my coffee in rebellion against the shiver of the cold day, plastered in frost on the glass door beside my desk. Like an innocent inquiry you often have when you sit and think of time, I asked myself, “what have I learned this year?”
I’ve learned we must imagine the good to be more than it is and the bad to be smaller. After all, it is all just that: imagination. We build the world in our image, and often, our image is skewed itself. The best way out is to imagine it all. That is all the world is, really. It is all a dream we hammer into stone every day. Then, time freezes it all in our personal histories, and we talk of the years in retrospect as if we knew what was happening to us, as if we had any control besides a few minor decisions. The pair of socks you choose to wear on a given day is as important a decision as what you believe is good and true. By saying that, all I mean is that both are equally irrelevant, trivial and inconsequential. But even then, where there is a speck of good, we must imagine a blot we cannot get out, no matter how much we scrub it. Not that you would want to get rid of even a speck of goodness, but that is a far cry from the point.
It always makes me curious how in this world, even a heretic believes for a second. Yes, even someone like me stops in his tracks and thinks about it, and it occurs to him how easily so many people live, with their Gods always being a proxy for all their mistakes and flaws, but also their blessings—for a second. For a second, he thinks how easy it is for the believers, but then a second passes, as it should, and he remembers it is not easy for anyone but the dead.
Another year is almost finished, and it has not been easy to always be happy, but I have done my best. I know this if nothing else. Years pass regardless of whether you are a believer or a rebel like me. Years pass, and we all face the same question again: many seconds have gone by; what have I done with them? No God comes to answer this, and no person can answer it well enough. We can only hope we did not waste them.