“The truth is, once you learn how to die, you learn how to live.”
– Morrie Schwartz from Tuesdays With Morrie
That is exactly what this book has to offer: a slow and steady journey between the realms of life and death; a dying old professor’s last words that sometimes ring so true that the line between life and death starts fading away right in front of your eyes.
“Everyone knows they’re going to die, but nobody believes it,” Morrie said, as he was in his bed, waiting for the visit of death. It suddenly struck me.
Tuesdays with Morrie is a doorway created by a dying man’s last words into the meaning of life, as well as death. Over fourteen Tuesdays, the writer Mitch Albom and bedridden Professor Morrie talk about the most fundamental of things — life, love, regret, family, culture, emotions and death.
Morrie had a clear sense of life. To love and be loved. “Love is how you stay alive, even after you are gone.” And that has been a great lesson for me. Everything that we do, all they are for is just to be a little more loved. “Love wins, love always wins,” he said.
Morrie passes down his valuable lessons even when at times I would rather have different opinions. He made me sit with the book in my lap in revelation, the newfound acceptance in me that allowed me to intake the messages about family and forgiveness, love and life, despair and death. When the book ended up in my palms, it was a very vulnerable phase of my life. When nothing made sense no more, this book instilled hope in me.
With Morrie and Mitch, I laughed, cried, felt despair, and most of all, I learned how death is a part of life, to accept that and to still keep on living in a way that makes the world a better place. That is what Morrie Schwartz was best known for — imparting wisdom. And I am, fortunately, forever indebted for being able to receive bits of that wisdom.
My pre-Morrie self did not have a purpose in life. It was as if I was floating from one passing day to another, without any conviction or goals. After putting the book down, I questioned myself,
“What is my purpose in life?”
“What am I doing?”
“Where do I see myself tomorrow, next year, 10 years from now?”
Morrie’s words changed the way I perceived life, and even the way I lived life. Now I try to appreciate every little gift life has to offer because I realize my time is finite. I try forgiving people who have wronged me because hating them takes too much energy. And most importantly, I have found a direction in which I want my life to flow.
For me I can never go wrong with picking up the book at any time, flipping through the pages and learn all I can about life and all the wonders of it, death being a part of it.
Who is your Morrie Schwartz? I asked myself this question and searched for it for a long time. Everyone needs a mentor like that in their lives. To guide us through the darkest, most complicated paths. To teach us the true meaning of life. To help us get up every time we stumble. When I was in the void without a Morrie, because of Mitch Albom’s generosity and the justice he did to his beloved professor’s anecdotes and teachings in literary form, I did found my mentor. The beauty of this book is even if you do not have someone like that in your life, this book itself has the power to become your own Morrie.
Archi Arunima is the Staff Reporter of The Woodstocker
Edited by Victoria Lee