This is a morbid sentiment, but ultimately, it is true.
There is no getting away from the fact that one day we will die. The further time advances past this point, the more we will be forgotten.
Life goes on. It waits for nobody.
No matter how famous you are, how many followers you have on Instagram, you will be forgotten once you leave this planet.
Some may think this is a depressing way of things. It may appear that way, but it isn’t. It’s a dose of reality.
The modern world is obsessed with celebrity. We have become more and more narcissistic. We are obsessed with selfies, documenting every mundane moment of our lives online.
We have become addicted to gratification. Yet, none of it truly matters. Your ultimate fate will not be denied because you have over 100k followers on Instagram.
We enter this life equal, that equality fluctuates during life when some become successful and others do not, but it returns when we all reach the grave.
It’s a humbling thought, and one we would do well to consider, before we get ahead of ourselves.
Fame is fleeting, to chase it is a fool’s errand. We need to care about the good we can do while we are alive, and the present moment, because that is all that matters.
Here Today, Forgotten Tomorrow
I come from one of the most historic cities in England, Chester. It isn’t the most well-known city outside of England, but it was an important strategic location while the Romans ruled Britain.
The city is awash with historical ruins. No matter where you go in Chester, there is history around every corner.
When you live in a city such as this, it’s easy to take these places for granted. You have grown up around them, their significance is lost upon you.
They may be old ruins, and you may know some basic details, but you don’t realise the true historic value.
The above picture is of a shrine to the Roman Goddess Minerva. It can be found just outside the city centre over the river in Edgar’s Field, Handbridge.
Minerva was the Goddess of war, craftsmanship and knowledge. The shrine would have been an important place of worship in 2nd century Chester, or Deva, as it was then known.
The shrine sits next to an old quarry, and was placed along the main road that went straight to the Roman fortress in Deva.
It’s importance cannot be understated.
Yet today, it is simply a curious historical footnote in the city. A reminder of Chester’s Roman past.
I have to admit, I didn’t know the shrine existed until about 5 years ago. I had never encountered it before, despite living in the city nearly all my life.
I even worked nearby for a short time, and I was none the wiser about the shrine’s existence, nor its significance.
It took me until this June of this year, to visit the shrine. To put that into perspective, I’m 28, and have lived 20 of those years in Chester. It’s amazing how I had not come across it before!
Minerva may have been an important figure in Roman Chester, but today she is a relic from a bygone era.
Time has eroded any significance the Goddess once had. When I visited, I did not pray or offer a gift, I merely admired the shrine, took a moment to take it all in, and I was gone.
Minerva may not be forgotten, but her importance is non-existent in today’s world.
I admit, this is a sobering thought to contemplate. No matter what you do in this life, someday, it will be forgotten.
It’s easy to let this depress you, and ask the question, what is the point?
In reality, there isn’t much point to life. We are placed on this planet, not of our own accord, and we have to make the most of it.
The only moment we get is the present. We cannot change the past, we cannot go ahead into the future.
Those of us who want fame and fortune are chasing a false god, for it may come, but it will never last.
Some of the most powerful people have come before us, and perished.
The great Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius was one of these people. His remains were buried in the vault of Hadrian, yet when Rome was sacked by the Visigoths, his remains were lost forever.
He was the most powerful man in the world at one point, but once he was gone, his importance went with him.
If it can happen to Marcus Aurelius, it can happen to you, and it almost certainly will happen.
In age of instant gratification, where a large majority of the population want to be instaFamous, these are valuable thoughts to consider.
Do we want to chase fame and fortune, or do we want to live in the present moment, and do what we can today?
Only you can answer that.