Carpe Diem Meaning

Looking for "Carpe Diem" meaning? The meaning behind the popular saying “Carpe Diem” can be traced back to the infamous poem by the Latin author Horace. In Horace’s poem, “Odes,” the Latin line “carpe diem” follows a particular mentality that can be applied to all aspects of life. Whether you’re a business man looking to gain an edge in your career, or possibly a college student who is interested in studying literature, “Carpe Diem” is an excellent mentality to be enthralled in that will surely bring you success in your endeavors.

Origins of the phrase “Carpe Diem.” The origin of “Carpe Diem” is derived from the famous poem by Horace. Horace’s work is collected in various books referred to as “Odes.” “Carpe Diem” literally translates to “Seize the day” in English. The mentality behind seizing the day derives from earlier lines in the poem. As the author addresses his friend Leuconoe, he reflects on the meaning of time, the actions of the gods, and the uncertainty of the future. He urges Leuconoe and his readers to seize the day (or the moment) by not trusting the future, but doing what they can with the time that they posses instead of dwelling on future fates.

Franklin and “Carpe Diem.” If you are familiar with the works of Benjamin Franklin or his literary outputs (such as his autobiography, or "Poor Richard’s Almanack") then the mentality behind “seize the day” should immediately make you think of Mr. Franklin. For those who aren’t familiar with Franklin’s works or lifestyle, he lived by a “Carpe Diem” mentality which focused on what he could accomplish with the days he was granted instead of putting off what he could in a day to tomorrow. Franklin realized the ways in which time worked; the future is never guaranteed, which should allow followers of this mentality to achieve what they could by a strict schedule that advocated hard work, much like the one that Franklin followed in his daily life.

Popularity of “Carpe Diem.” Pop-culture has also made “seize the day” a popular mentality and saying to live your life by. The ground-breaking movie "Dead Poets Society" used “Carpe Diem” to advocate rising above normality. Metal gods Metallica also composed a song called “Carpe Diem Baby.” Notably in the Metallica song, some of the lyrics follow the seize the day mentality-such as “Live to win, dare to fail” and “So take this world and shake it/Come squeeze and suck the day/Come carpe diem baby.” It should also be noted that if you listen to the rhymes in the song, they’re similar to the poetic rhymes found in Horace’s “Odes.”

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