The title may be a bit strange, but there are some aspects of life that I have learned since getting into watch collecting and developing an overall interest in watches. The main thing is that we take so much beauty in our lives for granted that may be simple to some, but not as attainable to others.
I recently read a book titled “The Beauty in Everyday Things” by Japanese philosopher, Soetsu Yanagi. When you read the summary on the back cover, this book mostly focuses on Japanese folkcraft and essential home items. While that may seem kind of boring and uneventful, the book shows a truly beautiful way of thinking in that we take so many things in our daily lives for granted, but we do not take the time to appreciate the items that make our world a better place and our lives easier.
The world today is so focused on the next new thing to a point that certain material objects will only last a couple of years until it is thrown out, never to be seen again. Yagani speaks of a way of life that involves taking a moment to cherish the inanimate companions that we have in our lives, using them to their full potential and never being ungrateful for the things that we have. In watches, there are so many examples of wanting the next thing over and over again, but also a beauty in the hobby that can trace moments in history to an exact date. Let me explain.
For most people, a watch is a basic 3 hand accessory that some of us just use for fashion or to check the time. Timepieces have such an impact and place in history in all different forms. From space exploration with the Omega Speedmaster, driving as fast as possible with the Rolex Daytona, diving with the Rolex Submariner or flying a plane with the Breitling Navitimer, these watches all have such a place in history and the evolution of mankind it's unbelievable. Not only is there historical value to these small timekeepers, but there is also a large amount of sentimentality to these pieces that a collector puts into it. These may keep time to some, but to others, these are a literal time capsule for memories created by the people that we love who may not be physically here with us, but they are with us from memory and physical object perspective. To some, a watch is just a watch no matter the price point, but for others, a watch is a key or milestone to their lives and all things in life should be treated as such.
If we took a second or two out of our day to realize the things that we have, the things that bring happiness and joy, and treat those things with the respect that they truly deserve as companions to us, the world would be a much more beautiful place and retract us from the “recyclable” world that we live in today. Through evolution and time, we have lost our sense of beauty and compassion in the modern technological era and we should bring back compassion and appreciation for all the things that we get to enjoy, that get us from A to B, that keep us so close to our families and friends when they can’t be around, and most of all take appreciation for the beautiful watches that we get to wear and enjoy for years to come. Take a minute today to think about what makes you happy. There is enough stress and negativity in the world as it is. Let’s bring back some positivity.
Whether it be a watch, a phone, a car, a home appliance or anything that is completely ordinary to us, we should always take the time to appreciate everything that we have in our lives and treat them as the companions that they are. Yes, we do live in a much more technological world, but everything around us is still there to help us and make our lives more enjoyable. Let’s take a minute every day to appreciate what’s around us as I appreciate you taking the time to read this. Thank you so much.