Saturday, October 31

A question and answer ....

In April of 1992, a young man named Christopher Johnson McCandless hitchhiked to Alaska and entered the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. Four months later, he was found dead. This story of a homeless drifter who was a rebel in social sense, was celeberated by a motion picture and a book (Into the Wild). Two months ago, I had an opportunity to view ‘Into the Wild’. That movie has not stopped talking to me yet.

The story of Christopher raised too many question in me. I often wondered what lead people to choose a special way of life. I believe that it is a ‘calling’ that lead everyone to have a distinct manner of living. In a religious context, I can call it a ‘vocation’. There are wealth creators whose methods of operation marvel me. Can I mimic their successes? No... Should I mimic them? No! During my early professional life, it was Mother Theresa who attracted me. I remember wishing to become an ambulance driver in her missions for the old and the poor. However, that never happened!

Since 5 years, I am fascinated by solitude, contemplation and nature. I survey my thoughts and wonder if my attraction to them is superficial or real. One of the famous western contemporary writers who has explored the mystery of solitude and contemplative living is an American Christian monk by name Thomas Merton. I often gain lots of wisdom from his documentations, and observations.

Rev. Merton speaks thus in his book 'New Seeds of Contemplation', “Contemplation is also the response to a call : a call from Him Who has no voice, and yet Who speaks in everything that is , and Who, most of all, speaks in the depths of our own being: for we ourselves are words of His. But we are words that are meant to respond to Him, to answer to Him, to echo Him, and even in some way to contain Him and signify Him. Contemplation is this echo. It is deep resonance in the inmost center of our spirit in which our very life losses its separate voice and re-sounds with the majesty and the mercy of the Hidden and Living One. He answers Himself in us and this answer is divine life, divine creativity, making all things new. We ourselves become His echo and His answer. It is as if in creating us God asked a question, and in awakening us to contemplation He answered the question, so that the contemplative is at the same time, question and answer.”

I want to keep the above quote deep in my heart.

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