It’s been two weeks since I last posted, and trust me, it wasn’t my fault. Well, technically speaking, it was my fault but still…
Well, yeah, my laptop broke down and I had to bring it for repair. Anyway, to make up for that, I decided to upload a short story that I wrote a year ago, which reflects my feelings on when I was supposed to make a decision on which university course I wanted to take. Well, needless to say, I’ve grown quite a lot since then, but it would serve as a reminder of the past.
Without further ado, here it is, a short story entitled: Samsara
With the library where the education fair was being held behind me, I began walking back to my dormitory. In my left and right hand, I hold a number of colorful paper bags, containing all the pamphlets and booklets from the exhibiting universities at the fair. It was already starting to drizzle when I walked into the library with my friends. Now, the midday sky is grim and dark, seemingly devoid of life and of hope. I look up at the sky, hoping to see a glimmer of the fiery ball of gas we call the Sun, but alas, there is no sign of the glorious, scorching Sun I knew and love.
While trudging along the wet, empty sheltered walkway and avoiding the puddles of water on the ground, my mind is still processing through all the information I’ve obtained from the fair. The words of the various exhibitors echo in my mind and I felt a surge, rising up from within me. I resist the urge to just throw up and splatter my half-digested breakfast all over the walkway. I wouldn’t dare, because I was taught to be a responsible person, a contributor to society and not to be a burden to others. I wouldn’t dare to be that selfish and expect others to clean up after me, would I? Of course not.
What’s so selfish about pursuing your dreams, though? What’s so selfish about ditching away everything you have and running at your goals with all that you’ve got, especially when everything that you have was forced upon you from the very beginning? What’s so selfish about rebelling against the destiny you’ve not chosen for yourself?
But would I be able to choose my decision correctly, when it comes down to it? Will I proceed towards the Yellow Brick Road and continue walking on the red carpet laid out before me since the very beginning, or do I go down the old, worn-out path that I have been specifically told not to go? They said, it would be difficult, that it would perilous and that no one knows where it leads. The logical choice would be to walk down the brightly colored pavement before me and embrace the future that is given to me, but then again, is it?
The rain didn’t seem to let up but instead, the sound of the rain clattering against the pavements and on the roofs of the buildings grew louder by the minute. I leap over yet another large puddle of water, almost slipping and falling in the process. Fortunately and somewhat unfortunately, I somehow managed to stomp on the ground where the puddle is with one leg and prevented my imminent fall in the nick of time. However, even though I didn’t fall into the water, the water splashed upwards on me. I was partially wet and covered in muddy water, but at least, I wasn’t hurt. Brushing off the sudden adrenaline rush and the near-accident, albeit still wet and uncomfortable, I continue on my way towards my dormitory.
In this day and age where individualism is the norm, is it really a good thing? If so, why? If not, why? I ask myself these sometimes, and yet am still unable to come up with a satisfying answer. I see a great many individuals debate and banter about the same questions I’ve been asking myself, and yet the answer remains out of sight. It seems like this answer is just as elusive as the answer to life itself. Why do we live? To what purpose?
Maybe the answers I ask myself will only be answered, once the mystery of life itself is unveiled to me. Or perhaps, the answers will never be answered, like the cycle of life and death. We will ask ourselves these same questions until we die and a new generation will rise from the ashes, asking the same questions over and over again.
There are simply too many factors that determine our lives for us. You could say that we, human beings are victims of circumstance, but we may very well simply be patting ourselves on the back, by saying things like that. The circumstances are of our own doing, aren’t they? If so, does destiny exist?
I wave at an acquaintance, braving the rain about 20 meters away, but he didn’t see me and ran on his way towards an unknown goal. My eyes follow him as he ran until he turned and vanished behind a corner. I turn and continue on my way.
Everyone questions life at one point in their lives. Everyone would look themselves in the mirror and contemplate the meaning of their existence. But, most of them would soon forget these questions and move on with their lives up until their final moments on Earth. Is that the right thing to do? To just let life take its course and to allow the world around you be the master of your life?
No, not me. Not today, not ever.
I reach into my pockets for the keys to my room, as I walked up the stairs to my room. I unlock the door and walk in, locking the door behind me.
Maybe, the real key to breaking this cycle isn’t mere acceptance, or forceful rebellion against the forces unknown, but a combination of both. I believe awareness is key, but there is a different type of awareness. By being aware of the ironies of the world and the inner twisted nature of the world, we break the shackles that bind us in our “rightful” place. However, instead of running away to freedom, we stand exactly where we were, trying to completely get rid of the cuffs on our hands and legs. We tear into the cold, hard metal and cut ourselves on the cuffs, hurting ourselves even more than the other people, still bound to the chains.
I fling the paper bags onto the study table, causing the pamphlets and booklets inside to spill out onto the table and on the floor. I walk pass the mess that I’ve just created and throw myself onto the bed. I stare up at the ceiling, completely aware of the cobwebs hanging on the ceiling. A tingling sensation started to envelop me and I feel much lighter than before. It’s as if my body is now floating above the ground and away from all the worries of the world.
I am free, no longer slave to the cuffs and the dangling chains that bind me still. Instead, I am free to roam and do as I please. Unlike those who rebel aimlessly and more so unlike those who are ignorant of the truth, I can now see the world as it is, laid bear before me. And instead of choosing to join it or to rebel against it, I now choose to accept it for what it is and, to walk away.
This is my choice, now what about you?