One baby boomer reflects Beyond The End

As baby boomers, we are the best at a lot of things, and while The Greatest Generation might have us beat in the category of personal reflection, we’ve all been around long enough to do some pretty good reflecting of our own. That’s what Buck’s County, Pennsylvania’s Larry Lefkowitz has been doing lately, and he shares with BoomerCafé his reflections Beyond The End.

I often wonder what becomes of our accumulated knowledge when we die. Does it get absorbed into a collective cosmic consciousness? Is it passed on to every newborn, much as the chemical and mineral composition that everything is made of since the Big Bang? Or does it just go dark and end like the corporal entity?

Memories ... Larry Lefkowitz in a game of basketball with his father.

Memories … Larry Lefkowitz in a game of basketball with his father.

I have known and admired some magnificently intelligent and curious people who died and took their knowledge with them. After they had spent a lifetime learning and discovering, I watched as the life we know left them. I wondered, is this all there is? All that effort, all that was learned, all of that knowledge, some shared and some unique, just switched off like a lightbulb? What a depressing thought. Who would design such a thing? I find it hard to believe that waste is part of the grand plan.

To this point, attempts at preserving exceptional minds and abilities have been feeble at best. Books and videos have proven unreliable as they are reprinted and sometimes manipulated from their original form.

A great mind - Albert Einstein.

A great mind – Albert Einstein.

Even our own thoughts are subject to mutation over time. So what is the true legacy of our collective knowledge? I have given this a good deal of thought, to show you how uncomplicated my life is, and I have arrived at some conclusions.

I believe that what you share with those closest to you is the true legacy of what you have learned. This would include friends, family, and particularly offspring. Often, they do not accept the grand gift you give them, but a certain amount of wit, wisdom, and knowledge is gained through osmosis.

I remember my father telling me stories about his growing years and it was all white noise to me. But decades later, I remember it more maturely, and it is like a history book stored in my mind.

I do wish I’d been more cognizant in my youth to listen more closely and ask questions, because the inquiries I would make today would surely garner treasures of information. Alas, human life is fragile and short, and we are all too often busy making our own history to research that which came before, even if it was right at our fingertips.


  1. Here are my 2 thoughts of this issue. I have seen through my many years that habits good and bad are repeated because they are learned while being in a family. I have also noted that I now end up saying things like “Well my partents always said …” . Some I learned the hard way some not so much the hardway. Good read.

  2. Excellent essay Larry. I also think about these things, but perhaps in a different way. I now know that not every thought process or habit I learned from those before me is actually good for me. I now take a careful look at each ‘lesson’ from my past, and analyze what is worth keeping and what only reflects my parents’ fears and insecurities. I have no idea how these lessons are passed on if we choose not to have children or grandchildren like myself.

  3. Very thoughtful and thought-provoking Larry. Thank you for this.

    I refuse to believe that when we are gone; that’s it -nothing more. There are spirit, character, values and emotions given to us by our now deceased loved ones. I believe that our energy lives on in the form of memories and dreams of those we leave behind.

    For example, it’s amazing how smart and insightful my mother became after she died!

    1. You are so right, Don. In fact, BOTH my parents seem to be evolving into people who — though they couldn’t tell me a damn thing I would listen to for years — are now filled with knowledge, insight, and even experiences I finally found were valuable. In the days ahead, I hope to learn even more from them! LOL

  4. I am glad to know others think about these things. I still prefer to think that posthumous nothingness is a flawed design and something better is in place.

  5. After reading your post, I was here go back again to my state of confusion. Asking again, what is my real purpose here? Why am I here? Why I was born in this place and why not in that place? Everyone leaves. Everyone will die. I have read a lot of books about life and it is always us, ourselves who complicates everything. Always remember, don’t forget to smile and love yourself all time.

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