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Columbus, Ohio
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Profile of MagiClyde
While listening to the album "Bookends" by Simon & Garfunkel, they had a section that was older people in a retirement home speaking about some of their life experiences. These were taped back in the 1960's. Immediately after that was a song about what you leave behind after you're gone.

It suddenly dawned on me that except for these snippets of conversations, these people have been long dead, buried and virtually forgotton by society and even their family members, as most of them are no longer with us as well. Smile

Needless to say, after having lost most of my family over the years, it made me think about my own life and what, if anything, I'll leave behind as my legacy to the world.

Does anyone else think about this? What do you want the world to remember about you when you're gone?
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Rupert Bair
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Profile of Rupert Bair
I want them to remember they are better off reflecting on my life than to be a part of it.

I want them to hail me a genius as my work was cr*p until I died.

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Profile of rossmacrae
I've been thinking lately that so many things in our life (perhaps even our universal human need for a religion - though I wouldn't want this to hijack the thread) stem from our discomfort with the thought that everything ends: our life, our accomplishments (read Shelley's OZYMANDIAS), the earth itself.

What can we do to ensure that something we have done or been remains forever? Nothing. We need to become comfortable with "right now." It's kind of Buddhist, really, finding happiness by letting go of desire - or Christian, finding the eternal only when you stop trying to achieve it on your own merits.

When I try to leave something behind after me, I keep coming back to my kids: what I've wanted most in life is to send into the future kids who are better than I am. I think maybe I've done it (the last chapter of the story hasn't been writen yet, and really I won't be around to read it).

On a lighter note, I've been torturing my wife with a "last request" (she's sure I'm gonna die any day now ... she's been sure of that for twenty years) - I tell her I want two things: a huge obituary (the paid kind where you can write anything you want) full of entirely invented accomplishments (secret life as a spy, met her in the andes where I found a fabulous treasure and rescued her from a long-lost tribe of headhunters, that sort of thing) - and, if she insists in an open casket at my wake, a sign on my chest that reads "Smile ... I'm dead and you're not."
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Profile of kregg
I gave it thought when I was in my mid-teens, but, I've resolved and I'm okay with life. It all came down to asking why should I care if I'm remembered after I'm dead?
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New York, New York
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Profile of nucinud
This is why they have tombstones, people can not stand the idea they will not be remembered after they are gone. Egos do this. They say to live in the hearts you leave behind, is not to die. Not every body has to leave their mark on the world. Just be a good person, that is what counts. Help others on the road of life. You are dead way more time, than you were alive. Enjoy it now and help others to enjoy it as well. Don't worry if you are remembered. Just be good and kind.
"We are what we pretend to be" Kurt Vonnegut, jr.

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Harry Mandel
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Profile of Energizer
Only a very few great people are remembered after they die - for good reasons.

Similarly, only a very few really bad people are remembered after they die - for the bad things they did.

The overwhelming majority of us are eventually forgotten.

One thing I'm fairly sure of ... People will remember me for the magic that I did at least for a few years after I die!

I'd like to be remembered as a nice guy - and perhaps to make a contribution to science.
"We judge a book by its cover and read what we want between selected lines" - W. Axl Rose, circa 1992.
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Profile of SpellbinderEntertainment
A magnificent book on the legacy we leave and the courage to consider our legacies came out recently:

“A Leader's Legacy”
by Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner
ISBN: 978-0-7879-8296-6.

Especially as you approach your middle years, one begins to question and wonder what will be left behind and what contributions one makes in your own life and the lives of others.

I’m happy to see this topic brought up, and to highly and personally recommend this book, as I have a professional relationship and friendships with the authors.

…“In this provocative book, experts James Kouzes and Barry Posner take on a unique challenge and explore the question of legacy. They examine the critical questions everyone must ask themselves in order to leave a lasting impact. In each of twenty-two essays the authors consider thorny and often ambiguous issues, and why it takes courage to “make a life,” and ultimately, how the legacy you leave is the life you lead.”…

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