Here’s something we’ve learnt about the human body: In humans, as many as 100,000,000,000 cells die in each adult each day and are replaced by other cells.
So, with each dawn, with each new day, each of us is a variant of the person we were the day before, and we carry the legacy of that person. The important thing in our lives, therefore, is this legacy – what it is that we start each day with, and what we’re going to pass on to the next day’s variants so that the variants have a Happy New Day.
Why, then, do we save the resolutions, and the prayers, and the wishes for one day in 365? When each day is actually a life lived (well or poorly)? When each day is a journey with its ups and downs?
I think it’s because evaluation and assessment of each day, and the hindsight and foresight involved, requires the superhuman mental balance and effort that’re beyond the capacities of most of us. Doing it once in 365 days (if we do it at all) gives us the benefit of diminished hindsight (which explains why we repeat our mistakes) and endless foresight (which explains why we build castles in the air). All of us know how challenging self-appraisals and goal-setting are at work. Is there any surprise then, that we need the calendar to remind us that we should attempt to do it for our lives?
However, humankind’s strength is hope. We live in hope. And it’s in this hope that we find the sustenance to deal with each new day. And, once in 365 days we try to make time to share that hope with others, because hope shared is hope reinforced.
Let’s hope and wish one another, then, that in the year ahead we have more love than hate, more health than illness, more joys than sorrows, more illumination than darkness, more wisdom than foolishness, more empathy than apathy, more humility than hubris, more sense than nonsense, and (in the combination of all these) more benefit than loss.
Wishing and hoping that 2021 will be better than the one that is now history in many ways