As we steer the barque of this life over the seas of passion as we say, for any observant watch-keeper there are navigation points on the way. We are approaching one now as yet another year draws to a close. It is a time particularly in our hemisphere when school leavers initiate many family decisions and employment opportunities. It is a decision time for achievers.
In addition, we are all affected by our biological time clock as each year ticks past. Most women are aware of it and the constraints it has on producing a healthy family. However, both men and women who want to continued to be employed need to take the time clock into account when considering their prospects over the age of fifty years in particular. The days of 50 years of service with one firm and a presentation gold watch have well and truly gone. Those who survive and thrive in our society today are most likely to be those who can, or rather prepared to adapt – those who can “reinvent” themselves and be very flexible in what they are prepared to do. I can tell you from experience you may have your ego a dented more than a little!
A good start is to start your adult life with a useful qualification because all professionals and employees all need to be able add value. You must not be complacent with this ticket-of-work but be prepared to update as the barque of this life has to change tack.
In this age of entitlement, there are many people who do not think it is necessary to adapt to be employable, drop out, and then foolishly expect the same outcomes as those that continue to apply themselves. They do not put much store in the old adage to “make hay while the sun shines” while they are young, fit and relatively employable. They do not take seriously the advice from notable people: “You can ask me for anything you like, except time.” (Napoleon); “A man who dares waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life.”(Charles Darwin); and “We say we waste time, but that is impossible: we waste ourselves.” (Alice Bloch)
Out ritual is studded with allusions to time: "...be careful to complete your allotted tasks while it is still day..." and of others in the Third. At every opening we hear “...the swiftness to which I should attend the WM”. We also have the reason why the WM is place in the east, the altered position of the square and compasses and about time as a period of learning and discovery. I like where we are told we should timely warn a brother of an approaching danger and especially where we are told that the time will come when the wisest of us knows not how soon when death, .........etc. However, no masonic moral lessons seem to be drawn about time, timeliness and the waste of time. More is the pity.
Some people will just stumble along with their barque directed only by the winds of passion but feel that it is their right to have a safe and secure passage to their destination. Before considering alternatives to industrious and productive alternatives, it is wise to remember it is later than you think and that we are not here for practise.