Use this forum to discuss the May 2018 Book of the Month, "The Sword Swallower and a Chico Kid" by Gary Robinson
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I try to live this way, but I often dwell on the past. I probably don't give enough thought to the future, but I suppose that is the point of living in the moment. This can be construed as an irresponsible way to live though.
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There is a big difference between preparing for the future and being worried about the future. There is a saying that I live by: 'Those who fail to plan, plan to fail'. I do what I can today, in preparation for what I want tomorrow.
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I think Duke was stuck in the past. With his addictions, he was practically stuck in a dream world. It's hard to be 'present' when you're constantly high. At least, that's how I see it.
As for me, I'd like to think I'm living by that. After all, I have my family to enjoy and there's no guarantee that they'll be here in the future. I can only enjoy them now.
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indulgence on the past is absolutely foolish! We don't actually live in the past. Life is for the present and the future.
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It's good to remember the past, it helps you decide what to do. It's good to prepare and be ready for the future, otherwise you will be stuck in a loop. But making either of these the focus of your life will bring anxiety and depression. Best focus on today by using your memory of yesterday and your knowledge of tomorrow.
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I think Duke learned this lesson with time, as his character seemed to grow substantially throughout the novel. I try to live by this but I personally struggle. I find myself worrying about, or even fixated on future predicaments. I try not to dwell in the past so much, just learn from it. Sometimes that is hard to do too.
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Samy Lax wrote: ↑20 Jun 2018, 23:10
You picked one of my favorite quotes from the book. I sometimes like looking back at the past, but sometimes, it just brings back some painful memories. However, you are nothing without your past. So, I wouldn't completely ignore it at any point in time.
Correct! I agree. We learn our lessons from our past and events from the past are part of who we are today.
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Though we are not told how exactly Duke achieved his turn around in lifestyle, his past greatly influenced his present. It is no wonder he could now reach out to the destitute. Our pasts shape us.
There is more treasure in books than in all the pirates’ loot on Treasure Island!
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Duke's attitude towards present is quite justified. I too hang on to my past but only for a short time and wondering about my future is none of my concern. I too prefer living in present. I can't have a past to cherish if I don't revel in my present.
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I think for his type of lifestyle it was appropriate to have that mentality of not knowing what will happen tomorrow so live for today. For me and the type of life i am living I have to plan for the next day but I will never look back.
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Regardless of how much someone may want to live in the current moment (carpe diem and all that), the past and the future cannot be ignored no matter how hard you try. The past still exists as a foundation for who we are. Our experiences and our past actions act as the blueprints for our personality and have weight in terms of who we will become. Our future still exists in our personal timeline even if we choose not to worry about it in the time being. The future, and which way our future will go, still matters in the present because it is largely determined by our desires and our fears and everything that motivates us.
“But need alone is not enough to set power free: there must be knowledge.”
― Ursula K. Le Guin, A Wizard of Earthsea
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It's a beautiful quote. There really is no time like the present. It reminded me of a speech by Steve Jobs where he said he asked himself every morning: "If today were the last day of my life, would I wanna do what I'm about to do today?"
It's no use to go back to yesterday... I was a different person then.---Lewis Carrol from Alice in Wonderland
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I don't worry about the future too much and I wouldn't really classify myself as being stuck in the past. However I don't agree that "yesterday is just a memory."
What I mean when I say I don't agree that "yesterday is just a memory" is that certain memories carry with them negative feelings. And even though I do try to liberate myself from old negative feelings, try as I might sometimes I can't. Sometimes they're just as real today as they were when they were created. So to me that's not just a memory.
I don't know if that made much sense... But I do agree that all you have is today.
Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers.
- Harry S. Truman.
No amount of guilt can change the past.
No amount of anxiety can change the future.
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The struggle that I have is thinking about the past and stressing over the future. It's a constant battle in my mind that keeps me up at night. I try to consciously just relax, let the past go, and enjoy the present. It's a process that I have to continually remind myself to do otherwise I get lost in my deep thoughts of regret and anxiety. I was not always this way, so I want to get back to living life to its fullest and really just enjoying the moment.
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I think Duke tried his best to live in present but no one is unaffected from memories of past and so was he.
The best thing is always keep trying to be in present and look forward to future with great expectations and hope.This is what I believe in.