Writing Prompt #2: Time Travel

If you could travel back in time, where would you go and why?


Honestly, even if I could travel back in time, I'm not sure I would. One, because I have watched too many Hollywood movies to know that things always goes horribly wrong. Two, I'm not sure what to change. I'm not a big history buff, so I can barely remember all the important events in history. Also, again, I don't think you should be changing events willy-nilly.


Screw it, you know what? If I could travel back in time, I would take a lottery ticket number back to myself. And, I would tell him exactly what companies to invest in with the winnings. Then, I would tell myself to use that money to take care of the family and invest it into helping the world. There is a chance I could turn into a spoiled monster and ruin the world, but oh well. I'm tired of inaction and, in a way, nihilism.


What I mean is that I'm tired of thinking, "Why do anything it won't change anything anyway?" When I was younger, I was more naïve, but I was more decisive. Things were simpler; the world was more black and white. Now, I'm older, and things have just gotten complicated. I know the world isn't black and white, but I almost believe it's better to see the world that way. Because it invokes action and gives you a sense of direction.


Let me expand; I love this story of a farmer and his horse.

There is a Taoist story of an old farmer who had worked his crops for many years. One day his horse ran away. Upon hearing the news, his neighbors came to visit. "Such bad luck," they said sympathetically. "Maybe," the farmer replied. The next morning the horse returned, bringing with it three other wild horses. "How wonderful," the neighbors exclaimed. "Maybe," replied the old man. The following day, his son tried to ride one of the untamed horses, was thrown, and broke his leg. The neighbors again came to offer their sympathy on his misfortune. "Maybe," answered the farmer. The day after, military officials came to the village to draft young men into the army. Seeing that the son's leg was broken, they passed him by. The neighbors congratulated the farmer on how well things had turned out. "Maybe," said the farmer.

I love this story because it is an example of the vagueness of life. In the grand scale of things it is impossible to know if the moment is good or bad. Which is very wise, but hard to deal with rationally. As human beings, we like things to be simple. It's this or that, good or bad. The concept of duality is hard to wrestle with. Thus, I have a hard time living a life like this. Everything is too vague, and it's all too directionless. I feel like I don't stand for anything, and it's all too bland and fuzzy. That said, maybe I'm just not zen enough or not intelligent enough to handle the fuzziness of this mindset.


Anyway, that's why I decided that I'm going to do something, rather than nothing. I could mess up the world, or I could also make it a lot better. There is a chance it could all go horribly wrong (most lottery winners do increase the chance of death btw). Or, it can help me and everyone around me live extremely happy lives. Who knows, I sure don't, but I want to err on the side of action. So, let's do it. Fire up that time machine. I got the numbers right here.