Carpe Diem

Carpe Diem Meanings

Carpe diem is an expression of Latin roots that was conceived by the Roman poet Horacio. Its literal translation gives relevance to the phrase “harvest the day”, whose content tries to encourage the use of time so as not to waste any second.

The complete phrase popularized by Horacio, historians say, was “carpe diem quam minimum credula postero”, which in Spanish can be understood as the following advice: “take advantage of every day, don’t trust tomorrow”.

Carpe diem is also what is defined as a topic with a literary profile, that is, a theme that, on a recurring basis, appears throughout history in works framed within universal literature. This expression can be approached from two perspectives: on the one hand, it is an exhortation so that no one lets time pass; on the other, it can refer to enjoying in the present time every pleasure in life, without thinking about the future, a period impossible to know.

A meaning of the latter that in our days has been taken by many people almost as the leitmotif of their lives. And it is that they consider that we must live each day as if it were the last, without thinking about what a tomorrow will bring that is totally uncertain, because an illness or an accident or an event of a similar nature can change our destiny irremediably and quickly.

In this sense, a phrase that could reflect what we want to express is the following: “Manuel after recovering from the traffic accident has adopted the Carpe Diem maxim as the driving force of his life. So now she enjoys every moment she lives, her family and friends and the little pleasures of life, without making any kind of long-term plans ”.

However, not everyone is in favor of this Latin expression and the advice it gives us. And they consider that it is an authentic irresponsibility to dedicate oneself only to living the present without thinking about the future, without establishing insurance so that life in a few years will be calm and without complications that have been controlled.

The carpe diem concept was widely used during the Baroque Era and in Romanticism, although it was also very present during the Renaissance, three movements during which it was taken as a philosophical basis for the creation of multiple works.

On the other hand, it should be noted that the phrase carpe diem gained a lot of popularity from the film Dead Poets Society, a film that starred Robin Williams and Ethan Hawke, among others. The material, which was distinguished with an Oscar Award in 1990, shows how a poetry teacher (played by Williams) tries to motivate his students with this Latin concept, seeking a change in their minds and promoting an active attitude on their part.

The teacher emphasizes that carpe diem is not a simple combination of words, but that in order to fully understand it and take advantage of its meaning, it is necessary to use reason and know how to face the consequences that its compliance entails in advance.

A council and a teaching which is carried out by the aforementioned teacher to all of his students who decide to apply it. Thus, there will be those who dare to write a text criticizing the fact that absurd sexist traditions are maintained at school and the initiative taken by another young man who decides to fight with all his strength to do what he likes: to interpret on a stage.

Carpe Diem