I was looking through my old notes and documents for a piece of music I wrote years ago. I didn’t find what I was looking for, but discovered this instead — something I wrote on a piece of scrap paper more than 15 years ago. It was Piers Anthony’s preface/ introduction in his 1982 novel, “On A Pale Horse”. I must have been around 16 or so when I read it. It made such an immediate impression that I had to write it down, for prosperity if you will:
“… To try to hang on to one particular section of life is foolish, it can’t be done, and if it could be done, it would not be worthwhile. Change is much of the essence of life. Death is the final change. We cannot hold on even to a day; how, then, can we capture life itself?
Perhaps our whole awareness of individuality, of self, is an illusion. If so, it is better not to grasp unduly at that illusion, but rather to live our lives in such a manner that when we must at last lay down, we will not be ashamed.
Life has meaning only if we live for meaning.”
Piers Anthony Dillingham Jacob
May 17, 1982.
From the author’s preface to the novel, “On a pale horse” (‘Incarnations of Immortality’ series)