Are we really merely players?

art of encore living personal development Jun 08, 2022

I found Shakespeare difficult to read back in Jr. High School. However, I recently immensely enjoyed rereading As You Like It.

It opens with this line.

"All the world's a stage,

And all the men and women merely players."

The way I read this is that ol' Willie is revealing both the personal significance and cosmic insignificance of human endeavor.

Although our lives may matter a great deal to us, they matter very little in the grander scheme of things.

Shakespeare makes a compelling and often comedic case for his assertion. At the same time, the play begs the question: if our fate is to merely play our role through the many stages of life, what, if anything, is it all for?

It's a daunting question, especially if, like me, you're waaayyyy north of 50 and in your life's third and final act.

 And yet, I think there's an implicit invitation in unpacking the idea of our ultimate demise and triviality.

Any meaning your life has is based on what you did with it, while life is yours to do something with.

It's a frighteningly awesome power. You get to define what your life means by deciding what you do with it.

Today, I encourage you to not just think about what to do with what poet Mary Oliver called "your one wild and precious life," but also actually do something with it worth doing.

After all, if we are all truly only actors, your one and only job is to act. Why not act well and on purpose?

Scott Perry, Encore Life Coach at Creative on Purpose. 

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