An interesting recent poll… People often use metaphors to describe their life… Which ONE of the following do you think best describes your life?
A Journey: 51%
A Battle: 11%
The Seasons: 10%
A Novel: 8%
A Race: 6%
A Live Performance, Like a Play: 5%
A Carousel: 4%
The responses above were provided to participants and are well-known life metaphors from Western culture. For example, life as a journey is from Homer’s Odyssey (and the Epic of Gilgamesh should also be credited as well). Life as a battle is Homer’s Iliad. Life as the seasons is from Ecclesiastes and ascribed to King Solomon. Life as a race is from St. Paul. And life as a performance or play is from The Bard – Shakespeare.
Fascinating that there is minimal difference by age, gender or region… statistically the same percentage of 25 year olds and 55 year olds both see their life as a battle (or a journey, or whatever).
But I wonder if it’s the SAME people with the SAME outlook on life as they age, or if there’s some greater social balance at play. What if the the metaphor people used to describe their life evolved over time, but on a broader social scale this was a zero sum game?