This post was written on October 3rd.
I realize this post has nothing to do with my India experience, other than the fact that I am IN India (that counts for something, right?), today was Sunday, and I found myself with some extra reading time.
In continuation of this observation, a disclaimer: If you know me, you know that I enjoy writing. So via the channel of my India blog, my occasional writing musings have now been given a platform--muahahaha!--and are bound to come out every once in a while.
Back to my original intention. If you haven't read Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom, you absolutely MUST.
I don't care if you don't like to read. I don't care if you're too busy. I don't care if you haven't picked up a book in ages. READ IT. This fairly quick read offers a much-needed perspective on the meaning of life that could probably, in some way, benefit everyone, regardless of age, experience, or circumstances. It's also a wonderful testament to the legacy of teachers, and is written with both humor and poignancy.
Expounding on the 'if you know me, you know that I enjoy writing comment,' you might also know that I'm very much a quote person.
Some favorites from Tuesdays with Morrie:
(I don't think I'll ruin the book for you if I tell you, for the purpose of context, that all the following insights come from a dying, long-time professor, Morrie, who dialogues with former student, Mitch, about topics like death, aging, greed, marriage, family, regrets, society, forgiveness, etc.).
Morrie's response to Mitch's questions regarding how one could ever really be prepared to die:
"Do what the Buddhists do. Every day, have a little bird on your shoulder that asks, 'Is today the day? Am I ready? Am I doing all I need to do? Am I being the person I want to be?'"
Morrie on status:
"If you're trying to show off for people at the top, forget it. They will only look down on you anyhow. And if you're trying to show off for people at the bottom, forget it. They will only envy you. Status will get you nowhere. Only an open heart will allow you to float equally between everyone."
Morrie on interdependence:
"'In the beginning of life, when we are infants, we need others to survive, right? And at the end of life, when you get like me, you need others to survive, right?' His voice dropped to a whisper. 'But here's the secret: in between, we need others as well.'"
Morrie on death:
"As long as we can love each other, and remember the feeling of love we had, we can die without ever really going away. All the love you created is still there. You live on--in the hearts of everyone you have touched and nurtured while you were here...Death ends a life, not a relationship."
And lastly, my personal favorite.
Morrie on the source of satisfaction in life:
"Giving to other people is what makes me feel alive. Not my car or my house. Not what I look like in the mirror. When I give my time, when I can make someone smile after feeling sad, it's as close to healthy as I ever feel. Do the kinds of things that come from the heart. When you do, you won't be dissatisfied, you won't be envious, you won't be longing for somebody else's things. On the contrary, you'll be overwhelmed with what comes back."
Morrie, I couldn't agree more.