“There have been very good parts and very bad parts, but in the end, I love life. Every night before I sleep, I ask God for three more years, so that I can make it an even one hundred. Then I recite a blessing that my mother gave me when I left her in Poland. It was the last time I saw her. The blessing is much more powerful in Hebrew, but it says: ‘Wherever you go, may people always recognize that you have a beautiful heart.’”
credit: Humans of New York
it’s finally close to the end for Thursday- (where did the week go?) but i’m not complaining. i feel like i need the weekend to unwind and clean up a few things (a lot of things) in my apartment; but i’m now here waiting for my post-colonialism korean cinema class, thinking that i should probably do some readings before the screening of the movie 서편제(translated to English as Peppermint Candy), but of course did otherwise and ended up checking facebook and procrastinating my precious time away.
however i ran across one of these HONY posts. side note: i’ve been hearing a lot of people say HONY up to the point where i thought “wow, that’s such an interesting name for a blog… hone-ey” when i found out that it was actually a short for Humans of New York, i could’ve sworn i saw that much anticipated “Aha!” bubble squeezing out of my scalp. i was just too slow.
anyways, back to the reason why i’m writing this blogpost at the first place: i was touched by the story of that old woman. there’s a lot of things that strikes me so hard, like the fact that she never met her mother ever again after that goodbye. i personally couldn’t imagine being deprived of meeting my mom for the rest of my life. but the three little words that made me think was this: “i love life” and how she asked God to give her three more years for her to live and experience life.
the problem is this. What if I end up loving life too much? What if we all end up loving life too much that we forget that living is not the end but a means of achieving the end? Having been brought up in a catholic family, i believe in heaven, and of a life after death. but as a child (and being deprived of sweets and all those things that are bad for your health) i have always pictured heaven as consisting of ice cream mountains and liquid chocolate rivers and edible flowers growing at the sides of the river, which can double up as a cup at times where you want to drink that delectable chocolat. and then when i was a teen i realized how a picture of heaven that i have is so much like earth, and more so, filled with earthly pleasures that i wanted as a child. how can i be so confident what heaven would look like? if i would say now that i love to breathe (no duh, right? who doesn’t like to breathe.), how can i be so confident that heaven would even have air?
i have always had my faith installed in me by default, but at the same time now that i’m older, i have kept that faith as a choice of my own though there are some things that i have always questioned implicitly. this is the first time that i’m writing about it.
what if we end up loving life too much? what if at the end we love life more than we love God? what if in the process of trying to live life to the fullest we end up doing things which are sacrilegious? (hypothetically things like sex before marriage, etc. etc.) i might have worded the last question a bit too poorly because of course you don’t have to be inclined to do things which are religiously forbidden to live life to the fullest, but that is just a gist that i wanted to throw out. as a catholic, i have kept my faith, but i wouldn’t lie and say that i have always believed in them. i have questioned them over and over again, and i think it is normal, for me and also for other people to always question their faith- in that they try to consciously understand the path that they choose, instead of blindly accepting what they were given.
what if we love life too much that we sin?