One of my favorite singers and song writers is Peter Mayer. Peter, a folk singer, sings all types of songs, but my favorites are ones that touch on the meaning of life in whimsical ballads. Today being Halloween have a listen to Peter’s song “John’s Garden”:
“It’s a tale about pumpkins in October,” said Peter in an interview on the Song of the Soul podcast on iTunes. “The pumpkins are a buzz with the news about what’s going to happen. Some say ‘I’d rather live out my days in the pumpkin patch in peace’, while others are saying ‘wouldn’t it be fantastic to be a jack-o-lantern!'”
“We are the pumpkins,” Peter Mayer adds. “We live only briefly but what a beautiful and glorious life it is if we treat it as such.”
This song reminds me of Steve Jobs commencement address to Stanford graduates in 2005 where he said:
“No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.
Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”
Where are you playing it safe? What areas of your life can you be a ‘jack-o-lantern’ and truly shine? These are the questions I’m asking myself this Halloween afternoon, thanks to Peter Mayer and Steve Jobs.