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Being A Better Man - Alf Herigstad 7th April 2017
189 – Life Is Significant…so are you!
00:00:00 00:09:34

189 – Life Is Significant…so are you!


Life Is Significant…

In the above picture I was demonstrating how NOT to weed a garden, it was kind of a joke.

You never know whats going to happen on Fridays…because I just talk about what is in the upper crust of my brain.  As it relates to being abetter man of course.

Before I get into today’s content though, I am going to acknowledge the sponsor of today’s program, Stump Town kilts.  They are called the sponsor because they help me produce the Friday episodes…without them, there may not be any Friday episodes so I encourage all of you to head over to their website at stumptownkilts.com to check them out.

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Alright, so today what is on my mind is dirt.  As in the stuff that covers the earth that plants grow out of.  The reason I’m thinking about dirt is because I spent most of the day with my wife, getting our garden ready for planting.  I’m covered with dirt right this minute in fact, just like in the picture.

It was a lot of work.  I can feel it in my back and my knees, but it was a good day. 

There is something about working the soil that is very primal, it goes back to our very early ancestors.  Just having your hands in the dirt, preparing it to be planted with things you will eventually eat.  There is something about the act of doing that, that connects you to the land and changes your outlook on things.

I realize not everyone has a garden.  Many people live in cities, or in situations where gardening is not an option.  Here me out on this though.  The point I’m making applies to everyone.

I do not garden for survival.  No one I know gardens for survival any more.  Now we just do it for the joy of creating our own food, and because it taste better than what we find in the store.  But if we go back just a couple hundred years, and from there go back to the dawn of mankind, it was all about survival.  Our ancestors, yours and mine, had to plant things, and tend to them, and harvest them, so they could feed their self through the winter.  If they didn’t plant enough, or if a late freeze killed their crops, or if disease or insects or anything else damaged their crop guess what?  People might die.  It was a very big deal.

Many of our ancestors didn’t have jobs they went to every day like we do now.  Instead they had their land.  Their crops and livestock, and it was a full time back breaking job making sure it all went well.  They depended on the harvest just like we depend on our paychecks now. 

In the process, these people that came before us had something many of us do not, and that is, a profound connection to life, the dirt, the weather and the seasons.  To the earth in general. 

The reason I’m talking about this is because  I think something is missing nowadays.  We go to work, we get a paycheck, we pay our bills and live our lives but, our paychecks don’t really connect us to anything except our employer or our business.  We are trading our time for money, instead of investing our time toward the creation of our actual sustenance.  There is a big difference in that.

We go to the grocery store and buy our food.  Or we go to a restaurant and order a meal and its not a big deal.  How often, when you are eating a meal do you consider what went in to producing it? Most of us just take it for granted.  Whatever kind of food you want, can usually be obtained without too much trouble.

Actually nowadays we take many, many things for granted, and that leads me to the point of this entire episode. 

What if we went through the world and took nothing for granted?  What would that be like?  We would probably be super grateful for everything we received.  We would rejoice about everything we had;  our clothes, our cars, our food…we would even be appreciative of the water we drink and the air we breath.

It might be hard to imagine, but do you think if you took nothing for granted that its safe to say you would be more appreciative of life itself?  I think so.  This is the part that has to do with being a better man.  You might be wondering how not taking things for granted could help you be a better man, and I’m about to tell you.

If life was to become a bigger deal than it is now.  If we took nothing for granted and were appreciative of everything in the world around us.  It stands to reason that our own lives, our actions or lack of action would also take on more significance because we would be connected to that world.  The way we live would matter more than it does now because we would have a greater connection to the world we live in.  Can you see how that might help you become a better man?

I’m not suggesting that you suddenly take nothing for granted, that would be impossible in today’s world.  I am suggesting that you make a concentrated effort to take less things for granted though.  Be more appreciative of life.  I believe if you can muster up a genuine appreciation for things in your life both big and small, that your own life will take on more significance as a result.

When you see your life as a significant thing, then how you live matters.  The choices you make, the actions you take, and the things you say now have a connection to the world, and consequences that are bigger than you.

I believe this is how our ancestors lived.  Its how our species was designed to relate to the world, in a spirit of appreciation.

So think about that as you go through the next few days.  Make an effort to look around your life and be appreciative of the things that are there instead of taking them for granted.  Consider how you fit into that equation, and what you add to the world. I think you’ll find if you do that, the choice to be a better man than you were yesterday becomes a lot easier, because who you are is significant, and what you do matters.

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