杨朱 Yang Chu: The brevity of life, Rip Van Winkle and time value

杨朱曰:
“百年寿之大齐;得百年者,千无一焉。设有一者,孩抱以逮昏老,几居其半矣。夜眠之所弭,昼觉之所遗又几居其半矣。痛疾哀苦,亡失忧惧,又几居其半矣。量十数年之中,逌然而自得,亡介焉之虑者,亦亡一时之中尔。则人之生也奚为哉?奚乐哉?为美厚尔,为声色尔。而美厚复不可常猒足,声色不可常玩闻。乃复为刑赏之所禁劝,名法之所进退;遑遑尔竞一时之虚誉,规死后之馀荣;偊偊尔顺耳目之观听,惜身意之是非;徒失当年之至乐,不能自肆于一时。重囚累梏,何以异哉?太古之人,知生之暂来,知死之暂往,故从心而动,不违自然所好,当身之娱,非所去也,故不为名所观。从性而游,不逆万物所好,死后之名,非所取也,故不为刑所及。名誉先后,年命多少,非所量也。”

-《列子》, 杨朱篇

THE BREVITY OF CONSCIOUS LIFE

YANG CHU said:

“One hundred years is the limit of a long life. Not one in a thousand ever attains to it. Yet if they do, still unconscious infancy and old age take up about half this time.

“The time he passes unconsciously while asleep at night, and that which is wasted though awake during the day, also amounts to another half of the rest. Again pain and sickness, sorrow and fear, fill up about a half, so that he really gets only ten years or so for his enjoyment. And even then there is not one hour free from some anxiety.

“What then is the object of human life? What makes it pleasant? Comfort and elegance, music and beauty. Yet one cannot always gratify the desire for comfort and elegance nor incessantly enjoy beauty and music.

“Besides, being warned and exhorted by punishments and rewards, urged forward and repelled by fame and laws, men are constantly rendered anxious. Striving for one vain hour of glory and providing for the splendour which is to survive their death, they go their own solitary ways, analysing what they hear with their ears and see with their eyes, and carefully considering what is good for body and mind; so they lose the happiest moments of the present, and cannot really give way to these feelings for one hour.

“How do they really differ from chained criminals?

“The Ancients knew that all creatures enter but for a short while into life, and must suddenly depart in death. Therefore they gave way to their impulses and did not check their natural propensities.

“They denied themselves nothing that could give pleasure to their bodies; consequently, as they were not seeking fame. but were following their own nature, they went smoothly on, never at variance with their inclinations. They did not seek for posthumous fame. They neither did anything criminal, and of glory and fame, rank and position, as well as of the span of their life they took no heed.”

The Lieh Tzu, Book of Yang Chu

What is the time value of a score or twenty years and youth?
When Rip Van Winkle woke up from his slumber, besides a longer and grayed beard, did he find himself richer or poorer from his unnatural sleep?
Was he robbed of his time, as though he had bought a long-dated call option but whose time value has been relentlessly decaying away towards its eventual worthless expiry, soon after he woke up?
Or maybe ol’ Rip had stashed a little something away into a interest-bearing account reinvesting the coupons and compounding and growing over the years, and woke up instantly rewarded with a tidy sum without having to wait for it…
.
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珍惜 – Cherish:

停泊在昨日離別的碼頭
好多夢層層疊疊又斑剝
人在夕陽黃昏後
陪著明月等寂寞
年少痴狂有時難禦晚秋風.
*經過你快樂時少煩惱多
經過我情深意濃緣份薄
誰說青春不能錯
情願熱淚不低頭
珍惜曾經擁有曾經牽過手.
珍惜青春夢一場
珍惜相聚的時光
誰能年少不痴狂
獨自闖盪,就算月有陰和缺
就算人有悲和歡
誰能夠不揚夢想這張帆.
珍惜為我流的淚
珍惜為你的歲月
誰能無動又無衷,這段珍貴
明天還有雲要飛
留著天空陪我追
無怨無悔也是人生一種美.

珍惜為我流的淚
珍惜為你的歲月
無怨無悔也是人生一種美.

誰能夠不揚夢想這張帆
Who can resist yearning for and raising their sails and dreams

明天還有雲要飛
留著天空陪我追
Tomorrow there will still be clouds to sail on
Leaving a patch of sky for us to chase towards

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In a half and half again score years or 5, 6 years, some are able to huff and puff and push themselves and their fund size to a decent mid to high double-digit MMs, and perhaps priming for takeoff into the triple-digit promised land of milk and honey and mucho manna.

While others somnambulate and sleepwalk through the years like a zombified Rip Van Winkle…

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