Book Title: Tuesdays with Morrie
Author: Mitchell David Albom
Genre: Biographical, Philosophical novel, Memoir
Mode of reading: Amazon Kindle
What is the book about?
A rumination about life and death, based on the lessons imparted by a professor (Morrie) to his student (Author Mitch) during the concluding days of professor’s life, this book is attributed to their last thesis together. The classes took place every Tuesday at the professor’s house. The subject of the thesis is ‘The meaning of life’ and the learnings are based on real-life experiences.
How do I feel about the book?
A beautiful curation of an everlasting relationship between Morrie (teacher) and Mitch (student), this book discusses the metaphysical conundrums almost all of us (at least I can vouch for my generation i.e. millennials) are struggling to find the answers for. Mitch conveys the learnings distinctly by separating his sessions with Morrie into fourteen different chapters, one for each class that happened for fourteen consecutive Tuesdays. He captures Morrie’s perspective on death, family, emotions, fear of aging, money, love, marriage, culture, forgiveness, and the perfect day in an enticing manner.
While I felt that most of the issues and the way these are addressed in the book are clichéd since I have heard and came across such philosophical thoughts and through different channels (like my parents, YouTube videos etc.) I do admit that at times, I felt myself totally immersed into Morrie’s beliefs and opinions due to the strong and convincing emotion stringed to the message that few lines in the book intend to communicate.
While not all the stories end happily with a person going into remission, this book, though with not so captivating start and indeed a sad ending, does bless the reader with many rays of sunshine on pivotal acknowledgments that we most often try not to acknowledge – acknowledgments about dying and death. For all it manifests, after reading this book I wonder why we don’t talk about our end (death) as joyfully and comfortably as we do about our lives, future plans, and goals. Don’t you think that dying and death are as natural as birth and life?
My highlights from Tuesdays with Morrie
What really captured my mind and seemed to be the most striking thought for me is the conclusion of the book by Mitch – “Have you really had a teacher? One who saw you as a raw but precious thing, a jewel that, with wisdom, could be polished to a proud shine? If you were lucky enough to find your way to such teachers, you will always find your way back.”
I could certainly connect to this message as I believe a good teacher has the magical capabilities of moulding your thought process and can ameliorate the worst of situations by guiding through tough situations in your life, leaving an enormous impact on your mind and lifestyle.
Also, I liked a conversation between two waves which somehow left a huge impression on my mind about the minute relevance of our existence in the world and yet the humongous magnitude of our presence on our surroundings – “The first wave says ‘You don’t understand! We’re all going to crash! All of us waves are going to be nothing! Isn’t it terrible?’ “The second wave says, ‘No, you don’t understand. You’re not a wave, you’re part of the ocean.’ ”
The book did influence my mind and heart by some very touchy lines that made me literally close the book for a while, look around, and appreciate mine and everybody else’s/everything’s presence around me. It also reminded me of my grandmother and the most beautiful relationship I still share with her for perhaps “Death ends a life, not a relationship.”
Few thought-provoking lines/suggestions by Morrie are worth noting. He suggests not to let go of things too soon, but not even to hang on for too long. He tactfully brings about the salient differences between our generation and his (old) by highlighting the missing display of emotion from ours and that all of us are more into small selfish talks rather than really listening to others. As per him, there is nothing wrong to delve into emotions and later let them detach from you, instead of running away from experiencing them.
For all, Tuesdays with Morrie does iterate the very basic rule- Love wins. Love always wins!
As a matter of fact a few lines are disheartening (like the one by Mitch– “I thought about how much time we spend trying to shape our bodies, lifting weights, crunching sit-ups, and in the end, nature takes it away from us anyhow.”) and will make you wonder why would the author include such
My Rating: 3/5
Tuesdays with Morrie is one of those books where I would love to give five stars and one star with almost equal enthusiasm, since the book takes you to highs and lows, at times riveting and sometimes dull, I literally had a plethora of feelings and moods while reading it. So I will keep it 3/5.
Conclusion & Recommendation
Definitely a good read for those who have an iota of interest in philosophical and thought-provoking material. I am certain the impact of few (if not all) messages from the book will remain intact with the reader for longer than one can imagine. Have a happy reading 🙂
I would not suggest the book for children as they might not be able to understand the deep messages owing to bigger problems which they are not acquainted with at such a tender age. Also, those who do not enjoy reading too serious and philosophical books might find it boring.
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