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Archive for December, 2016

As I sit here writing this, on the very last day of 2016, I am acutely aware that what mortals call New Year’s Eve, may be a mere day in the calendar of other worlds, and that time on this earth is essentially a social construct; but because we are humans and bounded by time, we hold New Year’s Eve to its word and that’s the reason why I’m sitting here, writing this and reflecting on the past year.

In many ways, 2016 was a year filled with immense growth–I hasten to say that it is the best year yet, because that is what we say of every year that has passed; but I would definitely say that 2016 was a year of many firsts, of mistakes, of second chances, of trying again after every embittered battle, of fresh faces, of new memories and of…loving again. I do not think I have grown wiser over 2016, but the year has really exposed me to the wonders of this universe, of the everyday sights that I’ve seen, but have never really observed. This is the year where I found myself pondering more about the vicissitudes of life, of the frailty of the human condition, of the strengths of humans and of the reasons for one’s existence. Surely life has to be more than just the tasks that we have to endure,surely a person is more than the reasons for his existence–there seems to be a force governing this world, a force that neither science nor religion in its individual capacity can explain. 2016 has taught me to appreciate the blurriness of categories, and boundaries even more. It has allowed me to appreciate the different dimensions of truth, the diverging nature of perspectives that give richness to life, and the fact that perhaps there is no one truth in this world, and our interpretations of everyday happenings say more about who we are, rather than what is. It is also in 2016 that I came to realise more acutely, the follies of humans; how high people place themselves on certain pedestals, and how bad the crash comes. In essence, 2016 has been a sobering year; a wake up call in many aspects, but I am grateful for it because I now find myself being able to understand more about life in all its granularity, and yet still retain the belief that all of us are stardust in human form. We are capable of the change we believe in, only if we stop to think deeply about how we are going to achieve it. But the trick is to always believe, because once we stop believing in things, we settle. Settling doesn’t solve problems, for it only maintains the status quo. I’m not sure if I’ll be happy with a future self who merely settles. Life is more than that and I am more than that.

In a similar vein, 2016 has also gifted me with a person who shares similar convictions as myself, and it is fascinating to see the world through his eyes. It is through him that I came to think more about the possibilities of this universe, or other universes even. I began to see beauty in the smallest of things, in the most foreign of things, because essentially life in its entirety, can be summarised in a few words; albeit in an extremely generalised manner that hardly gives justice to it, but I shall still attempt to do so. Life begins when a person embarks on a quest for self-awareness, and a quest for self. What makes the self? What is the self? Is the self whole or truly unique? What differentiates you from the other? I may not have the answer, but I believe that the process of discovery is more critical, and the answers may always change. We can arrive at the closest approximation of the answer, but never the answer itself. The day we do will most probably be the day the journey ends. Perhaps then we will wake up and find that this world may have been a dream after all. Who really knows? That,is the beauty of 2016–the year has opened my mind to all sorts of possibilities, and all sorts of questions, which have in turn, given me more impetus to live bravely, love fiercely, and laugh heartily.

The world is a fascinating place. As I sit here writing this, I am aware that the future is full of uncertainties, and as humble humans we can only plan, but things may not go as planned. At 19 I was terrified of the future, at 22 I was devastated that the present that I knew was never going to be the same. At 24, going on 25 I am still afraid that I am heading down unclear paths, and that my plans may not come to fruition; but this time I find myself embracing the unknown with open arms, because if I knew what was going to happen, if I knew who I would be in future, the certainty would definitely hinder me from exploring all sorts of possibilities. I sound confident–don’t get me wrong; I am still afraid. I know I will be discouraged, and even disappointed if things don’t go as planned, but I also believe that way leads onto way, and the life project will carry on, no matter what. Perhaps the life project is made up of moments, moments juxtaposed into each other, rather than a seamless narrative of ups and down that make sense–we humans are the ones that make sense of things but reality is so much more complex, and it would do as good to recognise that every moment is unique, and never again, will there be one like the other. But life is also a series of moments jumbled up in an anachronistic fashion–you have scenes of the future flashing in the past, and the present is dotted with vignettes of the future, with the past flitting by in the future horizon. Who’s to say what’ll transpire, along the next street corner?

Maybe somewhere down the line, when we are all comfortable in our own skins will we share stories that tell of our deepest fears, and of the times that make our hearts burst with happiness.

I end with a hopeful quote by Mary Oliver.

“To live in this world you must be able to do three things; to love what is mortal, to hold it against your bones knowing your own life depends on it, and when the time comes to let it go, to let it go.” 

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