Cheers to a blog comeback!
It’s been a long adventurous journey so far, and it’s a shame that my last blog post here was dated more than two years ago! Well, to be honest, I had a couple of drafts for the past two years but could not bring myself to publish them. Maybe it’s nerving to think people actually read my posts here. Haha. But I think the biggest contributing factor to the delay is time. I’ve got a job and volunteer work that included mostly writing for the past two years. But rest assured that the passion for writing is still here, and refuses to be kept in. If you would want to check on what I have been working on, you can view here.
I have also made a comeback on my reading hobby a few weeks back. But after reading six books in a span of less than a month, a feel indebted to write a post myself. I also realized that a lot of what I learn stay longer when I write about them. So here’s a shot on etching my insights on a slate that challenges the passing of time.
1. Book Thief
This is one reading that nudged me to get back to personal writing. It revolves on the power of words on people’s lives — from relationships to large-scale movements that impact the world. Moments told from the perspective of Death made me value every minute of living. And by the word “value” I mean evaluating whether each minute has truly been living or plain existence. And I really checked out to see whether Liesel Meminger is a real-life character! Talk about inability to move on.
2. Little Prince
The little prince left me in tears upon his departure. He taught me never to grow old in spirit but always to see life in the eyes of a child. He challenged me to see things with wonder and needless complexity. The book is a breather from daily stressors, reminding me never to get indulged with figures or routines as the end in themselves. The infamous quote from the book goes, “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”
3. The Alchemist
I began this book with the anime The Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood in mind. Apparently the book had a different focus — an adventure dedicated to pursuing a dream. This book gives encouragement for readers to reach for their dreams no matter how far they may seem, and no matter how big the opposition might be. Paolo Coelho said in this book that, “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” For those who seem to have special people standing in the way of fulfilling their dream, he advised, ” Love never keeps man from pursuing his destiny.” Rather, ” When we love, we always strive to become better than we are. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better, too.”
This learning is affirmed by the preaching of Bishop Oriel Ballano dreams. He said, “Dream is the language of God.” A dream that comes from God is a dream that goes beyond my wildest imagination and impacts a bigger number of people. A God-given dream is a dream that is greater than me and outlives me. This, is the dream worth pursuing.
4. Divergent trilogy
I’m not a fan of YA fiction, but it is a different thing to be asked by my manager to read a trilogy of it. Employee of the Year, if you bet. Haha This trilogy got me hooked for days; stating that I finished the trilogy in a week is an understatement. The fight that Tris and Tobias endured and overcame in a dystopic world challenged me. Can I fight to the end for what I believe in? Can I vow with my life to preserve what I know is valuable?
Reading Divergent, I would imagine myself fitting into one or two of the five factions. I’m afraid I would be as stiff as Abnegation or unattached as Amity, or tactless as Candor. I wished I could be Divergent — selfless and brave and kind and intelligent and honest at the same time.
But the last book opened a realization for me: to be Divergent is to be a normal human being as we know it today. It is not something that only a few has; it is what I have. Divergence in the trilogy represents everything a regular person in our day is capable of doing. A genetically healed person. This thought was both a pleasant surprise and a reprimand at the same time. How could I have desired something that is already mine? But then, how could I desire such thing when I have so much better? More than just the genes, I’ve been healed completely as a person. By the wounds of my Savior I am healed, set free, and made new. Now I have not just genetically healed genes, but the DNA of Christ. It freed me from needless desperation, and it empowers me.
To be selfless, one has to be brave. This is another learning I gained from the Divergent trilogy. If I have to do something for the people I love and for the cause I uphold, I would need to muster the courage to let go of my own desires. Tris demonstrated a huge deal of courage — leaving family and all that’s familiar in search of self, and later on to abandon self for the sake of what she calls her family on a bigger scale. (A family = an entity that gives someone a sense of belonging)
I gained so many insights from each of the books I have read — so much that I think I could write a blog entry on each. We’ll see how much time would permit me. Well, this blog post surely has gotten longer than it should be! I hope it has not been a boring read. How I wish I could do this often! Really hoping this would not be the last. So long for now.
PS This post was composed in between countless hours of traveling, waiting on elevators and turns in the comfort room, and printing cards and tickets. Perseverance, yo!