Thursday, August 09, 2007

How do you want to be remembered?

In light of Rabbi Neil Fleischmann's recent post, I'd like to ask you a question.

How do you want to be remembered?

I think that this is a very important motivation when it comes to living one's life (at least initially.) If you want to be remembered as a good person who was generous and benevolent, you will have to structure your life accordingly.

Rabbi Fleischmann asked, "If you could choose the things to be remembered by, what would you choose - fame, wealth, power? How would you wish to be known - as a hero, a saint, a sage?"

And does the way in which you want to be remembered inform your actions now?

Please think about this and answer the question in the comments.

Only after you have answered the question should you read this post, 'Sacrifice and Anonymity,' and even then, that is not meant for everyone.

19 comments:

David_on_the_Lake said...

How I'm remembered is such a fleeting thing.
At most I'll be remembered for a generation or 2 or maybe 3..
What does that mean in the grander scheme of things?

canadian princess said...

now i want to be remembered as a kind person who took risks. but if i look into future times - i.e. when i'm dead - i doubt i'll care much if anyone remembers me.

Scraps said...

I try to live in a way that I'd want to be remembered--a kind person, a trustworthy and loyal friend, someone people want to be around. A good daughter and a good sister.

Unfortunately, I don't think I always live up to my own ideals...

Irina Tsukerman said...

I want to be remembered as loyal, dependable, determined, and principled person with honor, who took risks.

rivkayael said...

I'd like to be remembered as someone who really loved God and reflected it in the way she lived behind closed doors and treated people. "only to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God." Micah 6:8

rivkayael said...

ok, i posted that *before* i read your next post. now that i've read it, i'm really amused.

G said...

It's nice to know that at least some people recognize a good idea.

G said...
Ah yes. Let us inscribe that on my gravestone.

"Here lies Chana, who did not sleep around with strange men."
----------

There's a post in there somewhere.
A morbid post, but a post nonetheless

August 06, 2007 1:34 PM

Daniel said...

This is probably going to sound trite, but I'd rather that my good deeds lived after me, that I left the world a slightly better place than I found it, even if I was forgotten.

Daniel said...

Ha! I really did answer this before reading the other post!

corner point said...

Each of our sole purposes in this world is to be an eved Hashem, so I guess I'd want to be remembered as being the best eved Hashem I could have been, which includes all the mitzvos of bein adam l'chaveiro, and bein adam laMakom...
I know that's broad, but it would be hard to pick out a few mitzvos or qualities and say those are the most important ones.
By just working toward that goal of being the best eved Hashem that I can be, I guess that will ensure that they'll have nice things to remember me by...

corner point said...

...and now that I read the other aritcle, I feel sheepish for wanting to be remembered at all... :)

But the truth is, I think it's important for us to know that we won't be forgoten after we've passed on. There's a difference between fame after death, and the concept of zechira of a neshama; remembering people by what good they did in thier lives allows us to learn from them and it elevates their neshamos as well. I think that's important to remember while reading the article...

Erachet said...

Oh gosh. This is a rather difficult question because I have a feeling I know what I should answer - that it is far better to do great good and not worry about how you will be remembered for it, because you should do good for the sake of doing good, not for the sake of making a name for yourself. But -- I don't know. That isn't what I want. I mean, I guess, in some way, it could be, because that would be ideal. But I'd love to make a name for myself. I'd love to be remembered as a hero. I'm one of those people who has a passion for the days of old, of glory, of knights in shining armor fighting for their king and becoming heroes, of bards singing about their greatness, their courage, their talent.

I don't crave power. Honestly, I don't. I just want to be known. I want to be a hero. I want to do good, definitely, and I don't need to be famous and everything, but I want to be remembered. I don't want to be forgotten. And I want to be remembered as a hero.

Miriam L said...

I hope I'm remembered with fond affection by my future grandchildren.

Halfnutcase said...

I don't want to be remembered at all.

if anything I would like for the deeds I did for others to be perpetuated to others, but remember me? no.

RaggedyMom said...

I do actually think along these lines fairly regularly. I hope to be remembered as a good daughter, wife, friend, listener. And mostly, as a devoted mother.

When I'm cognizant of that larger focus, it serves to difuse some of the daily stresses and put things into perspective.

Diet Dr. Pepper said...

In seventh grade, my English teacher told the class that she would roll in her grave if she would be described as "nice" in a eulogy. Her point was for us to spice up our writing with more expressive language than just the word "nice." But now I feel that I really would like to be remembered as a genuinely nice person. Kind, respectful, giving.

Anonymous said...

I would have been better off dying before I reached adulthood. I then would have been remembered for nice reasons and by many. Instead, I'll be leaving behind non-favorable memories, an adult life littered with well-documented embarrassments.
So, I wish I could have had the life I wish I had had, the life such that I would be remembered for having been kind, wise, beautiful, strong, thoughtful, poised, hard-working, talented, generous, private, quiet, nice, the person everyone wanted as a friend, healthy, and long-lived.
But that's not who I turned out to be.

ilan said...

"And does the way in which you want to be remembered inform your actions now?"

They say that the way to live your life is to write your obituary and work backwards. Now, that says nothing really about how much people will remember you - only about what it is that stands out as significant when ount does remember you. This is how the Nobel Prizes got started.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

I'd like to be remembered in such a way that it will give my children hope, inspiration, and conviction for how to positively live their lives.

Basically -- if I'm remembered by anyone, I would wish that it's in a positive light, and as a role model for any of the good I may have accomplished (and still hope to).