Saturday, May 18, 2019

Voltaire - To LIVE WELL

What does that mean, “To live well”?  To ask several this question might in return with several ideas, even examples.  

Can any two agree on what it means to live well?   

Maybe most would agree that to live well is to be free but then, what does it mean to be free?   Some might similarly speak of peace but then agree that peace is more a pursuit and never a permanent place.  Others might think that happiness is to live well but then can any one of these be maintained, sustained, always? 

One question and idea, followed by another, may still leave many answers, examples, whether realistic or idealistic, possible or impossible. Maybe not, so instead of imaging, I turn to Voltaire words accepting that this reflects his life, his idea to live well. 
First, he writes:
We never live; we are always in the expectation of living? 
In the expectation…is an exception that the moment is not or never enough. It is not that the moment may be spectacular or uniquely special but that we tend to think beyond it, often dealing with: fear that the moment will not last or return in some measure; or perhaps pride or a sense of entitlement that I deserve this…, or have earned it.

How many times do you seize that moment almost to point that you can truly admit, “If I were die today, I would die accepting that I lived well.” 

Is to live well happiness, peace, prosperity, freedom, contentment, satisfaction, to love and be loved, significance or something else?

There is a mindful word, seldom used in contemporary living but relevant to the idea to live well, virtue; which is about our behavior, our individual lifestyle—how we live our lives and how it potentially and positively affects and impacts others. Simply put, virtue is moral good. 

From the age old book (1791), Justine, The Misfortunes of Virtue (also titled, Marquis de Sade), happiness as one of more ideas to live well,
True happiness is to be found in Virtue’s womb, and if God permits that it be persecuted on earth, it is so that Virtue may be compensated by heaven’s most dazzling rewards.
Could (can) be that to live well is to die, at least to self if not all on earth. 

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