A Time for Questions A Time for Questions
i
Illustration: Marek Raczkowski
Dreams and Visions

A Time for Questions

Adam Aduszkiewicz
Reading
time 8 minutes

Midway through our life’s journey, we begin to feel the weight not only of our own lives, but also of those we have not lived. Maturity comes when we cease to deny our own finitude.

It is a sunny day in June and I am sitting in a room on the ground floor. From outside the window comes the twitter of birds. All the local starlings have come flying down to eat the cherries from the trees that grow in front of the house. There has not been much time to enjoy the sight (and the taste) of the beautiful fruit. A ripe cherry is a fruit whose time is coming to an end. It will be no bigger, nor more lovely—it is whole and perfect. There is nothing to be added. Nothing can happen to it anymore.

Decline in the Afternoon

But people? With people it’s completely different. When it seems they’ve reached the peak of their potential in life, somewhere between their fortieth and fiftieth year, they do not speak of fulfillment, rather, they run into a mid-life crisis. In his short essay “The Stages of Life,” Carl Gustav Jung compares the paths of human destiny to the course of the sun throughout the day. First it rises. This is a period of becoming rooted in the world, building one’s position, determining one’s significance. One’s greatest task is to climb higher and higher. This is not simple; not everyone has the strength and courage.

Information

You’ve reached your free article’s limit this month. You can get unlimited access to all our articles and audio content with our digital subscription. If you have an active subscription, please log in.

Subscribe

Also read:

When the Brain Is Dying When the Brain Is Dying
i
Drawing: Marek Raczkowski

When the Brain Is Dying

Wojciech Glac

Our increasingly effective methods of reanimation have one advantage that may go overlooked: those who come back to life supply us with more descriptions of what they saw and felt when they were nearly dead. Neurologists are eager to hear such stories. 

Heart attack. Pain. Terror. Panic attack. Cardiac arrest. Cerebral hypoxia. Loss of consciousness. Silence. Time stands still, though the hands of the watch keep marking the seconds and minutes. Reanimation. Restoration of the vital functions. Restoration of consciousness. 

Continue reading