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Friday, November 14, 2008

How Time Doth Fly

Rameses II, or Rameses the Great, is often considered Egypt's most powerful pharaoh, leading expeditions that are commemorated in inscriptions on ancient buildings. He built a city, Pi-Ramesses, and other monuments, temples, and cities.

Ramesses the Great ruled Egypt from 1279 BC to 1213 BC, and is traditionally believed to be the Pharaoh that Moses dealt with in the book of Exodus, when Pharaoh was forced to let the Israeli slaves go.

Although I've never been to Egypt myself, I know that going to see the pyramids and monuments in the Valley of the Kings and other ancient parts is a great attraction. These monuments look old and crumbling now; no one would do anything other than study them, admire them, and then go back to their own lives.

Ozymandias is the Greek name for Rameses the Great. I have always pondered Percy Shelley's poem as a cautionary tale of trying to be too important in this world.



I met a traveler from an antique land
Who said "Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert... Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
'My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!'
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away."

Percy Bysshe Shelley


Travis said...

This is a good reminder that our focus needs to be on eternal issues, not physical ones.

All too often we engage in creating, building, improving, and advancing our own personal kingdoms, which we often guard with our lives. And if we think God is going to respect our sentamental feelings for our "things", then look at the example from Jerusalem AD 70.

God destroyed the temple, the city, the walls, and the people. His day of wrath was mighty. All the Jews could focus on was the elements of their culture. So, God took them away. It reminds me of a saying, "I turned to God when my world started shaking, only to discover that He was the One shaking it."

gzusfreek said...

Amy, I confess. I've been a voyeur -- of your blog for too long. I have to comment. You don't know me, but I am such a fan. You had me at: "I'm a skeptic who came to faith through studying the historic circumstances surrounding the death of Jesus."
And now, "How Time Doth Fly” I am reminded of Psalm 103. The whole chapter is great but these verses are most relevant
15 As for man, his days are like grass,
he flourishes like a flower of the field;

16 the wind blows over it and it is gone,
and its place remembers it no more.

I will continue to follow your blog. Thank you for all your inspiration!

Amy Deardon said...

It's funny that I keep coming back to this theme, but as I get older I realize more strongly just how fleeting this world is. I believe this world is the only place we can make a truly free choice of whether we will follow God or not. We cannot, we must not, waste this opportunity!

gzusfreek said...

So true. I feel it to. Like a vapor and then we're gone -- to a place He's prepared for us - Audio Adrenaline says it this way: "A big, big yard where we can play football. A big, big house, its my Father's house."
This morning, in my journal, I wrote this:
There are millions of writers out there and I have no illusions that I am any better than any one of them. But thinking that I am not special or talented has sent me into self pity and seclusion some times -- living in a prison of being something someone else wants me to be. ( and at my age, I have even forgotten who that someone is ) Not anymore. I am going to do what I love from this day forward. Maybe I’ll fall, but maybe I’ll stand on top.

Lakota Sioux leader, Crazy Horse famously exhorted his troops "Hokahey, today is a good day to die!" There was a time I agreed with him. Today I say: “Hokahey, It’s a good day to write."

Thanks again, Amy.

gzusfreek said...

I was trying to fit that last comment in by saying: live today, because tomorrow we may be going home :-)

Gwen Stewart said...

I'm there too, Amy. Fleeting indeed...our days are truly numbered, and in the view of eternity there are not many of them.

Great post. Great poem. Great blog! ;)

Avily Jerome said...

Wow, so true!

Great poem, Amy- thanks!

Gzsusfreek- quit being so hard on yourself! Your writing is fine, and getting better by the minute!