Tuesday, 17 May 2016

MPOV: Tuesdays with Morrie

Tuesdays with Morrie is a memoir of an old man, written by a young man about life's greatest lesson. Morrie Schwartz was a college professor who was diagnosed with ALS or Lou Gehrig's disease and did not have long to live. Mitch Albom was 1 of his favourite students who had accidentally found out about Morrie's predicament on TV. And so, they were brought together on life's last journey, rediscovering their friendship and came up with a 'final thesis' which is this book.

This book truly sparks joy! It brought so many emotions through me, had me thinking of my dull and monotonous life again and again. Reminding me that life is not about money and material possessions. Happiness is derived from LOVE!

Though Morrie and my dad were so different but I kept thinking of my dad throughout my reading. It felt like dad is relaying his message through Morrie to me. It's like dad wanted me to know all the positivity in life as currently, I am feeling a little down. Funny thing was I didn't picked this book intentionally, I was thinking what to read next and this book just picked me! The timing couldn't have been better...

Apparently this is Mitch Albom's first book and he has truly written it well. His prose was direct and simple, so easy to take it in and feel the journey. I can feel the unique love and bond both Morrie and Mitch had, even though they were apart for more than 15 years. It is a beautifully written memoir, Morrie will definitely be remembered always. Though he had ALS, Morrie was a champion, his positive energy was shining throughout this book. Truly a spirit to be reckon with.

And then, it was not an easy book to read as it brought tears to my eyes whenever it reached a poignant moment. Especially towards the end, when Morrie was about to leave for good. Hubs thought I was crazy when tears kept trickling down my cheeks! Heck man! It proved how well written and good this book is!

Some of Morrie's lesson on life:
1. It's a first for me, living funeral, and I do think it's a great idea! At least I would know what my family and close friends would say when I'm dead :-)
2. Accept what you are able to do and what you are not able to do.
3. Death should not be embarrassing
4. Dying is only one thing to be sad over. Living unhappily is something else.
5. Love wins, love always wins.
6. The culture we have does not make people feel good about themselves. And you have to be strong enough to say if the culture doesn't work, don't buy it.
7. So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they're busy doing things they think are important. This is because they are chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning.
8. The most important thing in life is to learn how to give our love, and let it come in.
9. Once you learn how to die, you learn how to live.
10. Don't cling to things because everything is impermanent.
11. How can I be envious of where you are when I've been there myself?
12. Owning things is good. More money is good. More property is good. More commercialism is good. More is good - the average person is so fogged up by all this, he has no perspective on what's really important any more.
13. Money and power is not a substitute for tenderness. As when we're dying, when you most need it, neither money nor power will give you the feeling you're looking for.
14. Devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning.
15. 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.
16. Love each other or perish.
17. Be compassionate. And take responsibility for each other. If we only learned those lessons, this world would be so much better a place. Love each other or die.
18. Forgive yourself before you die. Then forgive others.
19. Death ends a life, not a relationship.
20. Acknowledged the weakness and negative thoughts then shake it off and let it go... like a detachment from your current thoughts.

Some new words I've learnt:
Aphorism - a pithy observation that contains a general truth
Atrophied - gradually declined in effectiveness or vigour due to underused or neglect
Opiate - a drug with morphine-like effects, derived from opium
Synagogue - a Jewish assembly or congregation
Boccie - an Italian game similar to lawn bowling but played on a shorter, narrower green
Agnostic - a person who claims neither faith nor disbelief in God
Lavaliere - an item of jewellery consisting of a pendant, sometimes with one stone, suspended from a necklace
Callisthenics - gymnastic exercises to achieve bodily fitness and grace of movement

Goodreads rating: 4/5
My rating: 5/5

Author: Mitch Albom
Genre: memoir, biography
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