WOW Word-Of-the-Week #406: Carpe diem

May 15, 2012 by  

Carpe diem – seize the day!

When was the last time you seized the day and lived life to the fullest? Are you lucky to have a true love in your life? Are you making the most of each day?

I went to the Phrase Finder website and found this. “Carpe” translates literally as “pluck”, with particular reference to the picking of fruit, so a more accurate rendition is “enjoy the day, pluck the day when it is ripe.” The extended version of the phrase “carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero” translates as “Pluck the day, trusting as little as possible in the future.”

The meaning is similar to that of many proverbs that we continue to use in English as a warning to make the most of the time we have, with the implication that our time on Earth is short.

Many years back I had a friend who asked, “Susan, if you had six months to live would you live your life differently?” To which I responded, “Yes.” And then she said, “What makes you think you have six months to live?” Well, I thought that was pretty eerie and I have never forgotten it. As I have gotten older I have become more aware of how short life really is.

This week focus on seizing your days. When was the last time you went on a vacation? Do you cherish the people in your life who deserve it? Have you ever been guilty of taking your job or the people in your life for granted? Would you have to make changes in order to “make the most of each day?”

Reader Responses

“Good one!  Thanks for the translation.  Very interesting. Now, pluck the day!’ – Elaine

“Such a good message!! Hope you and Chris are super!!!” – Barb

“All we have is today. Let’s make the most of it, especially with the people we meet at work and other areas of our lives. Generally, people underestimate the effect that they can have on other people’s lives with just a smile, eye contact or a simple hello. My Godmother’s husband just died earlier this week at age 96. He was someone who believed in relationships, even with competitors in business. He was always straightforward and never tried to put one over on anyone. He always had a happy smile and enjoyed hearing the laughter of my daughters and his grandson, years after losing his eyesight. But he never begrudged himself the loss. He accepted life and people on life’s terms. Ben was always a great example of enjoying each day as it comes, and making the most of his relationships. I feel fortunate to have learned from Ben’s example, and as a result, I have no regrets. That is really all we can ask in the end, that we have no regrets in living our lives to the fulled. Carpe diem, indeed. Great phrase, Susan. Thanks. “Warrior” Joe Moran. P.S. Tonight I am going to the Cubs-Phillies baseball game with my uncle and his two kids. He took me to my first baseball game at Wrigley Field in August of 1968. Thirty years to the day, I returned the favor. These are the days – and the times – we need to treasure. Take care.” – “Warrior” Joe