2006/02/10

An Examined Life

In our youth, we were always told that life was a journey. From and to where we were going--we always took that for granted with an easy, un-reflected answer.

And yet, this spiritual questioning cannot be more meaningful as our batch reaches middle age, puts on more weight, and becomes more conscious of blood pressure and cholesterol.

This becomes even more significant as we hear of Roland’s mild stroke, Jun’s arthritis, Soc’s high cholesterol, Arnold’s psoriasis, and several other illnesses revealed during the batch reunion last December.

Back then, in IHMS, we were more conscious of our earthly journey as the world seemed to open up to us with all its possibilities. A vocation--for others, a career,--forked ahead of us. It took a Jones, who was one batch ahead of us, to awaken us from stupor with a single-word question in the yearbook--“Why?”

We were amused and may even have taken it less seriously. But deep within we knew that it held the reason for our life decision on how we would live our lives.

Of course, not all of us went through the deliberate motion of deciding to become a priest or a professional or whatever. There were others who simply went with the flow, like seaweeds in the ocean, going to where the current would take them.

Now, at past 40 and facing the challenges of the other half of our life, we are confronted once more with the same life question that Jones asked decades ago. And we know that we have to continue searching for its meaning in our life, if only to make our life worth living and believe what the ancient Philosopher Socrates once said that “The unexamined life is not worth living.”

The batch reunion last December 2005 afforded us that chance to look back at your life--from the IHMS to the present--and wonder how our life took shape in the decisions we made or did not make.

This blog also affords us that same chance to look at our life stories inside the seed box and reflect with new perspectives. This is our way of examining our life.

We may not reach with scientific finality the conclusion in our quest to answer that question, contrary to what the physicist Stephen Hawking said to end his recent lecture that “We are getting closer to answering the age-old questions: Why are we here? Where did we come from?"

But our conduct during the life journey itself is what counts and our humble contemplation before His grandeur is what would make our life meaningful.

It is our constant hope that with this newsletter, we have helped you reflect on your life. (msa).