Silkworm and cocoonWith another election coming up, I thought I would boost this post I wrote back in 2017. It still applies.


The silkworm makes an interesting allegory about choice. In order to get the beautiful silk from the cocoons, you have to kill the silkworm pupae before it transitions into – what is today – a captive commercially bred and not particularly beautiful moth.

Of course, you have to save some of the silkworms so that they can become moths to lay eggs to become silkworms to start the cycle again. Without some balance, we end up with nothing but moths. With no beauty or wealth to feed the moths, we ultimately end up with nothing.

Do you choose beauty (and the wealth that can come from selling the silk) – or do you choose life? Do you chose a little of both?

Most of my choices are not life or death decisions. Do I get a new microphone just because I want one? Do I turn on the Jacuzzi – the electric bill will be higher! Do I retire at 65 or at 70 or somewhere in between? Do I go see a play or take in a concert. I am fortunate (whether through luck, hard work, birth circumstances, good health, all of the above?) that I have faced – to this point in time anyway – this kind of benign choice.

Many people don’t have that luxury. Many have to make more serious choices on a daily basis – like whether to buy food or pay the rent. Whether to pay for the chemo or lose the house. Choices with real impact on life.

We do not all have the same options in life. And many times we only see our own choices and don’t consider that others may not ever be able to make a choice that includes something sweet, something fun, something beautiful. Something that makes life rise above survival. Their choices are often simply life over death.

As our country is transitioning to new leadership, I hope that the choices being made are weighed carefully with all Americans considered. With ALL Americans considered. Race, gender, religion, education, wealth and health differences make it difficult.

So, let’s all do our part to engage our critical thinking, our patience, tolerance and our empathy to help understand what choices we have and their consequences.

Do we simply survive or do we live…