Tuesdays With Morrie
By Mitch Albom
I do believe that things come to us when we need them even it we are not aware of our need. Finding Tuesdays With Morrie was like that for me.
I found this book at my local book store. As most of us do, I read the inside cover and the back cover and spot read the book itself. Something in it spoke to me and so I purchased it, took it home, and read it in one night.
At the time, I know, I felt lost. All the guideposts I had come to count on in my life to help me make sense of it were either gone or no longer provided me with any sense of connection or security. Each day seemed to be greyer than the one before it. And as I looked ahead, I could see nothing with light or colour or lightness of spirit.
As I read this book, waves moved through me. I saw myself in Mitch’s confusion and pain. I felt as if Morrie was speaking to me. As Morrie told Mitch, the culture we live in does not make us happy or help us to feel good about ourselves. We’ve learned to strive for the wrong things: things which do not feed our spirit. And so, we have to have the courage to say that if that culture doesn’t work for us, we will no longer buy into it. In reading about how Morrie Schwartz created his own culture through conversation, interaction, and affection and care for others even as he was dying, I was changed.
Morrie also told Mitch, his former student, that once we learn how to die, we learn how to live. When faced with our own mortality, we have the opportunity to strip away all the things and beliefs, values, and attitudes that clutter up our lives. And we can focus on the essentials of life and then we can choose for ourselves differently. I have held Morrie’s counsel to Mitch close to myself:
- Accept what you are able to do and what you are not able to do.
- Accept the past as past without denying or discarding it.
- Learn to forgive yourself and to forgive others.
- Don’t assume it’s too late to get involved.
There are a few books which I revisit in my life. Somehow I reach out for the one that my spirit knows I need. This is one of those books for me. At times when my life gets cluttered and noisy and grey, I read it again and I am changed in the moment.
The book is an easy read – gentle, thoughtful, human, moving, often funny, and very real.
My wish for those who read this book or have read it and choose to re-read it: may you find yourSelf through Morrie’s final class.