Humanity = Freedom + Dignity

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What is the mark you are leaving on this world?

Every once in awhile, someone comes along–stranger or friend–and in the heart of a heart-to-heart asks me, “What do you want to get out of life?”

I tell them, “I don’t want to live forever, but I want to leave behind something that does.”

As a writer and actor, the work I will leave on this earth is tangible in books and films. As a zoologist, my work will be less noticeable, unlikely to show up in a Google search. But to every endangered sea turtle I saved that spawned a generation, I made a difference. To every stray dog that I helped find a forever home, I left a lasting impression.

Yet my mark on this world is not limited to my career paths.

Perhaps less palpable, perhaps seemingly transparent, is the nature of our existence, the corporeal experience that we live and breathe, the manner in which we choose to live the one life we’re given.

I left my mark on the East Side Gallery of the Berlin wall in 2010. Four years later, I left the same mark in a ruin bar in Budapest. But paint, gravity and mankind will wear away my etchings.

Choosing to live by the words I left behind is my testament to humanity. It is the mark that I hope to leave on this world:

“…That freedom never dies. Remember your dignity.”

 

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2 thoughts on “Humanity = Freedom + Dignity”

    1. interesting article! the section i wrote on was a white community board, as i respect the original art. it is a shame people are writing over the artists’ work, but there is a point made in the article about street art and freedom of expression. many of the ruin bars i visited were unique in that they encouraged sharing a unifying message on the walls. i guess it’s your choice if you choose to share or if you see it as defacement or not, and i respect both opinions.

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