Time marches on and waits for no one. It heals all wounds and makes the heart grow fonder.
Time has come today.
Time does a lot of things, considering the fact that it’s an artificial invention. If one believes, as many religions tell us, that the universe is eternal and had no beginning, then there actually is no zero hour from which we all advance. In fact, the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashanah, took place Sept. 9, 2018; it’s Year 5779 by the Jewish calendar; Year 5780 begins Sept. 29.
Muslims marked Muharram, the start of Year 1440, on Sept. 11, and Year 1441 begins Aug. 31. The Chinese Year of the Pig begins Feb. 5; depending whose calculation one follows, it will be either year 4716, 4717 or 4656.
Still, time is major part of our lives; it sets markers for when we need to get to work, school or other appointments. It provides us a yardstick for everything from defining the aging process to the establishment of traditions. And on New Year’s Day it offers us a chance to clean the drawing board of sorts, put old failures behind us and reset goals that remain unmet.
It allows us to recommit ourselves to achievements we consider important while letting go of those we can’t accomplish or have lost their prominence in our lives. Letting go might be one of the most valuable tools that enable us to keep some semblance of sanity.
The New Year allows us to celebrate the good things we accomplished and our survival of some of the bad things. And we update our list of goals for the next year. Many of us make resolutions to improve our lives at least in certain aspects: Maybe we want to lose weight, earn a raise at work or learn a new skill. Maybe we want to finally save up enough to take the family on that big vacation that has been just a dream for years.
And we hope we can count on our elected officials and community leaders to make their own assessments and set their own goals. We trust that those special altruists among us will continue enriching everyone’s lives with their selfless acts of benevolence. We insist that public officials recognize the obligation that comes with their position to work for the betterment of our community at large, and that begins with using our tax money in ways that do the greatest good.
Of course, it’s a common joke that by the end of the first week most New Year’s resolutions already have been broken. If they were easy we wouldn’t have to make a special effort to keep them. But let us remember that our weakness shouldn’t absolve us of the greater goal of trying to improve our lives and our world. Occasionally coming up short, or backsliding, should prompt new reflection, determination of how we can overcome our weakness or temptation, and recommitment toward the goal.
Most importantly, lest us realize this year that just as we have our weaknesses, so do all other people. As we put a year filled with rage and angst behind us, let us all resolve to be more tolerant of each other’s shortcomings, more accepting of our differences, and appreciative of others’ points of view.
We hope all our readers find 2019 to be a year of greater success, less anger and more peace.