Monday, June 13, 2011

How Far We've Gone

I just can't believe how far I've gone. It feels only like yesterday that I was with my school friends, thinking nothing about life but a wonderful world, a vast and exciting journey that lied ahead of us. And it feels only like a blink of eyes that I was with my friends in university; we were just bunches of naive young people coming to adulthood with big dreams, starting a big chapter of the book of our lives.

Yeah, time surely flies.

Yet, this is only the beginning!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Time and Again

"He who has a why to live, can live with almost any how."

Viktor E. Frankl, an Austrian psychiatrist, was a survivor of Holocaust in 1940s. In 1946, he wrote a book titled Ein Psycholog erlebt das Konzentrationslager, which, for decades later, was more widely known for its English version, Man's Search for Meaning. In his book, he wrote his experiences in the concentration camp, even extended to the life after he survived -the sufferings, the tragedies, the grieves, the anxiousness, the hopelessness, but much more than that is how he then finally discover his meaning in life in helping his fellow ex-inmates finding theirs.

Now, without believing in any of his psychological theories or philosophy, what he wrote about his experiences still speak to me. I guess we all can still bring his thoughts into our own context. And once again, for the umpteenth time, I was amazed by this foundational reason which answers the questions of every human being about why life, even without anything in it, is meaningful. Do read about what he had to reflect on one of his experiences:

"... We stumbled on in the darkness, over big stones and through large puddles, along the one road leading from the camp. The accompanying guards kept shouting at us and driving us with the butts of their rifles. Anyone with very sore feet supported himself on his neighbor's arm. Hardly a word was spoken; the icy wind did not encourage talk. Hiding his mouth behind his upturned collar, the man marching next to me whispered suddenly: "If our wives could see us now! I do hope they are better off in their camps and don't know what is happening to us."

That brought thoughts of my own wife to mind. And as we stumbled on for miles, slipping on icy spots, supporting each other time and again, dragging one another up and onward, nothing was said, but we both knew: each of us was thinking of his wife. Occasionally I looked at the sky, where the stars were fading and the pink light of the morning was beginning to spread behind a dark bank of clouds. But my mind clung to my wife's image, imagining it with an uncanny acuteness. I heard her answering me, saw her smile, her frank and encouraging look. Real or not, her look was then more luminous than the sun which was beginning to rise.

A thought transfixed me: for the first time in my life I saw the truth as it is set into song by so many poets, proclaimed as the final wisdom by so many thinkers. The truth -- that love is the ultimate and the highest goal to which man can aspire. Then I grasped the meaning of the greatest secret that human poetry and human thought and belief have to impart: The salvation of man is through love and in love. I understood how a man who has nothing left in this world still may know bliss, be it only for a brief moment, in the contemplation of his beloved. In a position of utter desolation, when man cannot express himself in positive action, when his only achievement may consist in enduring his sufferings in the right way – an honorable way – in such a position man can, through loving contemplation of the image he carries of his beloved, achieve fulfillment."

Well, not to my surprise, what he had to say in short is that everything comes back to love. It is love that gives life a meaning, a sense of purpose. Love is the reason we are all here, and the reason of why life needs to keep moving on, and can be moving on. Because we are loved with a perfect and unconditional love. Which, by then, we can love. Let us not lose sight of what is really important in this life; because anything else can be taken out of your life, and you can always bounce back, but not love.

And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
-1 Corinthians 13:13

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Defying Gravity

Gravity, by its definition is the means which causes objects with mass to fall to the ground when dropped. It is something that happens by default; that everything, when dropped, or caused to drop, is bound to fall to the ground. And isn't it quite true, that falling -except falling in love, perhaps- is one thing that makes us, human, afraid. Falling is identical with failing, with being hurt, with being painful, with being disappointed. And that is not surprising that we have this latent fear inside of us; to be afraid to fall when we are at high grounds, and much more when we are to take the risks to leap, with a clear ideas in our mind that we are bound to fall to the ground with our high position at stake. That will mean putting your pride at risk, you say. Well, I'd say, I agree with what a song says, if that is what pride means, it comes at much too high a cost. The possibility to resist the gravity and go up even higher instead of falling. If scientists can come up with a rocket, why can't we resist the belief that we can't leap and fly without the fear of falling?

Something has changed within me
Something is not the same
I'm through with playing by the rules of someone else's game
Too late for second guessing
Too late to go back to sleep
It's time to trust my instinct
Close my eyes and leap!

It's time to try defying gravity
I think I'll try defying gravity
Kiss me goodbye, I'm defying gravity
And you won't bring me down

I'm through accepting limits
'Cause someone says they're so
Someone we cannot change, but till I try I'll never know
Too long I've been afraid of losing love I guess I've lost
Well, if that's love, it comes at much too high a cost

I'd sooner buy defying gravity
Kiss me goodbye, I'm defying gravity
I think I'll try defying gravity
And you won't bring me down

- Defying Gravity

Monday, May 24, 2010

How badly I want it back

As always, I end up writing nothing. Can anyone please turn back the time to when it was so much simpler, together with everyone who were in it?

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Wouldn't Want to Change a Thing

Now have you ever felt like there are times in your life when you just can't stand getting through it? There are times in your life when you just want to fast-forward everything; especially when you're going through tough times. When you are going through the moments you think as the lowest point of your life. People might say nice things to you, encouraging you that one day there will be a time when you don't have to struggle anymore. That one day, you can smile, knowing that all your hard works and sacrifices are finally paid off. But you are asking now, when? When is that 'time'? When is that 'one day'? And if it will ever really happen to me, can I just skip all these troubles and hard times and could I please just get the promise God and people have been reminding me over and over again? You feel very tired of surviving; you feel very exhausted about enduring; and you would love to just fast-forward your life, jump to the end results of your hard ships: a worry-free life. I mean, it is actually logical enough, if we will finally enjoy the results of our hard ships, then why wouldn't we just fast-forward them, and go to the end results right away?

But perhaps I'd love to state this reason one more time; the one I have just been reminded on: because God is more interested in our character, than in our comfort zone. Yes, God wants to give us a prosperous life, fulfilling our dreams, giving us a life partner, giving us a good job, promoting us and all that; but He is more interested in making us people of good character. He is more interested to make us realize, that in spite of all the troubles and the hard times and the hard works we are going through, we still have a great life. That in spite of all the challenge we might have in life, we still have family and friends we can count on. That in spite of all the heartache and the disappointments we might have in life, we still have people that would love us unconditionally and will support us to the end. That in spite of that one tough bitter big problem, we can still find thousands sweet little things around us. And perhaps when we realize that, life would not seem so bad. And we can be thankful that we are here, and we can still have chances to enjoy the moments.

If life was easy, partying wouldn't be so fun, friends wouldn't mean so much, and love wouldn't feel so good.
- @TheLoveStories