The Future Defines the Past

I wanted to write something about how actions invite bullying and whether or not armed with that knowledge one should alter his behavior simply to avoid the victim-victimizer game. That topic will have to wait because while I was thinking on that I realized that sometimes our present is unintelligible without the future to redefine our past.

Let me try to say that again. Our ‘now’ is an enigma without the future to reveal its truth. Have you ever thought to yourself, I will just have to be patient and wait for the future to explain my present reality to me?

32 thoughts on “The Future Defines the Past

    1. Translation: Advent – season of preparing spiritually for Christmas starts 12/1/19; it involves just this patience; waiting for things to unfold…I do love your post, truly.

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      1. Yes – takes me back to a really hopeful time – when everything seemed to be ahead of me. Not to mention that music both sounded great and meant something, too. You’ve set the Chaps to thinking here, ST, re: the idea of ‘God’s plan’ and related things….Muchisimas! Be back later on….Maybe you’ll brew up a pot of Gui Fei cha, if I ask nicely? A gal has to keep up her strength, and thinking is thirsty work. Chao for now and Peace be with you!

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  1. Didn’t really understand the last question but I related to the original premise of your post entirely! I once taught a seminar to a group of women re small things they can do to ward off attacks both verbally and physically (walking stride, manner of speaking, how to engage help when needed whether in an office or subway, etc). A woman who knew me and my background well cajoled me into doing this; I really enjoyed it and I think I gave some decent advice.

    I’d still like to hear some of your ruminations about bullying. We can compare notes!

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    1. I will try to explain the hidden meaning behind my question by telling you a story.

      A friend of mine recently ended his life when he jumped off the balcony of his 37th floor hotel room in Pattaya, Thailand. He had been telling me for months about this awesome smoking hot babe and how she treated him like a king. She worshiped him like a god until the day he ran out of money. He discovered that his perception of the ‘now’ with her was not as it seemed. He probably figured out that she had never given a shit about him and dumped him the exact minute his bank account hit zero. His future without her redefined or revealed the truth of his past with her. Unfortunately that broke more than his bank account, it broke his spirit to live.

      This is not a true story but it does happen here and even has a name: The Pattaya leap or sometimes the Pattaya jump. I used this harsh example to make my point that our future sometimes but not always redefines our present (or our now).

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    1. Ask him now, after he has seen me shoot! I gave him and two of his teenaged sons a shooting lesson.

      After examining a target that I has just done some nifty shooting on, son #2 says, “Wow, like a sniper.”

      iWe responds, “No son, he takes it to a higher dimension”

      *quotes are as close as I can recall. Feb 2019 motorcycle accident did nothing to improve my memory.

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  2. (Ok I think I have figured out how to comment here (although possibly at the price of deeper entanglement with wombathoney..) Anyway ST: “bullying”? I hate that word. To me It’s a playground word. We adults, like the woman in your example, deceive each other, take advantage of each other, physically or verbally assault each other. So give it back! We are no longer a five year old facing a mean nine year old.
    And as with the man in the story: wasn’t it his present (not his non-existent future) which revealed the past as a sham? That, I agree, happens all the time. “Don’t it always seem to go/That you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone?”

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    1. This OP is not about bullying whatsoever, but I do want to take up that topic in more detail soon.

      Yes, his present revealed his past as a sham but not my real point. If we were to go back in time when he was all kinds of happy and in love, we could say that his future was going to reveal the truth of his past – no?

      I am thinking that it is just an interesting concept to realize that in some cases the true meaning of our ‘now’ is unknowable without the future.

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      1. I would say that last sentence is always true. Or at least I’d say the future can and usually does change the meaning of “now”. But that’s why “now” should always be as perfect, standing alone, as we can make it. Whatever pleasure you expect to get out of your experience, your emotional investment, your effort-—get it now! Because there’s a good likelihood that whatever you’re getting now is ALL you’re ever gonna get!

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      2. I got a bit caught up with Islamism here, today, but would like to think and write something about the notion of “God’s plan” and how it may relate to our future as an interpretive key for our past. Echoes of the “Simon Tao” are teasing at the edges of this concept of yours, for me, amigo. Thinking/being/living inside-out seems to fit well in this Advent season of expectation….

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  3. “…get it now! Because there’s a good likelihood that whatever you’re getting now is ALL you’re ever gonna get!”

    Love the optimism here! Lol 🙂 I don’t agree with this, but maybe I am just lucky. I treasure the good memories I have of people I have known; even and perhaps especially of those from whom I am now kind of estranged. BUT I am pretty sure that none of those people were ever just using me, definitely not for money, which I have never had, lol 🙂 There are a couple of old friends with whom I have what I guess you could call irreconcilable differences, but I am so thankful to have known them, and memories of them still bring me incredible joy. BUT it would be very different if it became obvious that they were just using me from the start. Like I said, I have been fortunate.

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  4. Yes Hypatia, one of the lovely things that I am learning in this culture (trying at least) is about ‘living in the now.’ What I see here in some cases though is that people are so invested in the now that they mortgage (dead pledge) their future for the sake of their present. If and when their future ever gets here, it smacks them upside the head with a baseball bat.

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    1. Well..time flies, whether you’re having a good time or NOT! Of course we have to try to plan ahead, be prudent, exercise some delayed gratification…but not too much delay or deprivation, is my point. There’s no guarantee that the most prudent provisions will come to pass!
      JaC, it’s interesting that you see my comment as optimistic! I’d say it evinces NO faith in th efuture, which most people probably consider pessimistic!

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      1. I am sorry, Hypatia, I was being sarcastic, but in a teasing way, not in a mean or nasty way 🙂 And I am very aware of the fact that my optimism is the result of incredibly good fortune.

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  5. “We adults, like the woman in your example, deceive each other, take advantage of each other, physically or verbally assault each other. So give it back!”

    I don’t disagree but I do know there are preventative measures one can take to avoid all the unpleasantness in the first place and I knew them well. My brother used to tell me I had a tattoo stenciled upon my forehead “Don’t even think about messing with me.”

    I never realized this, had no reason whatsoever to feel defensive but I did survive NYC subways and am now convinced I could even intimidate The Simon! 🙂

    (Just kidding, dude… Really. I always listened to iWe.)

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  6. The price of being able to comment, (although I have to log in every time) seems to be no longer being able to post. But if I have to choose, I’d rather be ale to join the dialogue.

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  7. If things slow down at the office tomorrow (Tuesday) I’ll try to get a start on the post you’ve inspired with this one….Looking at life inside-out once more might make it feel a bit less upside-down. (Smile). Gonna hit the rack; I’ll be back for brunch. Hasta entonces y la paz sea contigo, hermano y hermanas!

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  8. Hola! Thanks for the “Reserved” sign on the corner table, ST! I enjoyed the huevos rancheros. Holding all in thought and prayer today, just because; will probably have that post ready sometime today.

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