For some people, I guess, reflecting back on your life means remembering your memories. If you have good memories, you enjoy them. Hedonistically, I guess. You are, right now, enjoying the memory of what you did then. I guess serial rapists and criminals returning to the scene of the crime subscribe to this. People who read this may find that sad, but saying it is probably true of other people isn't the same as being cynical.
For other people, memory is kind of junk mail thing. I mean, if you don't open your mail for 15 years, you can pretty safely throw it into the recycling bin with the other "direct mail" recycling. So recalling your memories of 15 years ago isn't any more useful than opening mail of that decade. People who read this may find that sad, but saying it is probably true of other people isn't the same as being cynical.
Me, I operate based on my actions being real, frozen in time. This is very similar to those who say God is seeing everything we do, and I have more in common, morally, with those "God-fearing" people.
But the reality of my past actions is something different to explain to my children than all-seeing, all-knowing, third party judges.
I thought of this while watching clouds overhead tonight in Middlebury. I saw the clouds (not rainy, but cumulous, nearly-rainy). And the farther away they were towards the horizon, the different they looked. But you could see that someone standing 20 miles away, looking up, would see a similar sight to that I saw looking up in Middlebury.
If that person was 2 years ago, looking up might be to them what remembering, or looking at the clouds from afar, is today.
This probably belongs on my other blog. But I believe that the things I do are forever, they may recede in perspective, but a dinosaur whose fossil is never found is as real as a dinosaur plaster skeleton in Chicago O'Hare. It is the only meaningful way to live, as every action you take now never disappears, it is as real as a stone that may or may not become a diamond.
"He goes down to the park and warms his feet."