March 25, 2007

Postage Due

For those that have looked at the links over there in the left margin, you may have noticed one called Postsecret. People mail their secrets in the site, and every Sunday a selection are posted. There are also books you can buy. I recommend them. Some of the secrets are funny; some are odd; many are heartbreaking, and way too many are familiar.

What never fails to strike me about this site is the surge of emotion people feel. As we cultivate a culture that becomes colder and more isolating by the moment, underneath it all still beat warm hearts and wide arms. Underneath it all.

I just read this piece in the LA Times that combines this idea with a time capsule one. You can send yourself an email in the future. You can set the receive date from one month to fifty years.

I find this fascinating. What would you tell yourself? There are a bunch of examples in the piece, and a website you can access because some people make them public. We live in such false times, with paper idols and lies masquerading as truth that it takes sites like these to remind us of who we are.

I'm sure one of the best times to speak to your future self would be upon graduation. I'm glad I didn't make a note when I graduated; I stalled out of the gates in many ways, and it's only the past three years that have let me get some traction in an arena I once thought was the only important one. That's a 20 year blip.

I hope people will use this idea to form an assessment of themselves in the future on a scale not predicated by wealth or trappings. I would like people to ponder their emotional well-being, and their role in the world around them, not merely what they have wrung out of that world.

The piece mentions wisdom. What a glorious, calm goal.


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