*This review is on Goodreads too.
TITLE: Tuesdays with Morrie
BY: Mitch Albom
GENRE: Nonfiction, Biography, Memoir, Inspirational,
RECOMMENDED: To everyone who aspires to be taught with incredible life lessons.
“The fact is, you are going to die eventually.”
Isn’t that a great uplifter? And no, I’m not taking death as a joke. *deep sigh*
I hate this book. It reminds me of who I was, of who I am and what I hope to be. I was a mess after reading this, but in a good way. Just like when I first read this book years before, it still touched me in a way only few books do.
But if I’m gonna be serious on reviewing this, I must admit, this won’t reach five stars. The writing style was sure five stars, but the other elements are at least four. But then, this book has taught me so many things. It imparted so many insights and lessons I need in my life. So forget the rules on perfect review. I read because I love reading and I always want to get anything from every book I get my hands into. Sometimes I forget the primary reason why I’m reading and focus on how the book is written just to make a proper review.
With this book, I just read without minding how it is written. And it was great experience. 🙂
So I don’t have a proper review (A blogger friend, Sam, made a great book review of this and it’s movie adaptation just recently, and you can refer to her site.), instead I copied all my favorite quotes from the book. These are jewels. Hope you guys like them:
“But then, he didn’t worry about a partner. Morrie danced by himself.”
“My old professor, meanwhile, was stunned by the normalcy of the day around him. Shouldn’t the world stop? Don’t they know what has happened to me? But the world did not stop, it took no notice at all, and as Morrie pulled weakly on the car door, he felt as if he were dropping into a hole.”
“Do I wither up and disappear, or do I make the best of my time left? he had asked himself. He would not wither. He would not be ashamed of dying.”
“Morrie would walk that final bridge between life and death, and narrate the trip.”
“He was intent on proving that the word “dying” was not synonymous with “useless.”
“Accept what you are able to do and what you are not able to do”
“Accept the past as past, without denying it or discarding it”
“Learn to forgive yourself and to forgive others”
“Don’t assume that it’s too late to get involved.”
“His philosophy was that death should not be embarrassing; he was not about to powder its nose.”
“I decided I’m going to live—or at least try to live—the way I want, with dignity, with courage, with humor, with composure.”
“There are some mornings when I cry and cry and mourn for myself. Some mornings, I’m so angry and bitter. But it doesn’t last too long. Then I get up and say, ‘I want to live
“The whole time I know him, I have two overwhelming desires: to hug him and to give him a napkin.”
“I’m on the last great journey here—and people want me to tell them what to pack.”
“I had become too wrapped up in the siren song of my own life. I was busy. Yet here was Morrie talking with the wonder of our college years, as if I’d simply been on a long vacation.”
“My days were full, yet I remained, much of the time, unsatisfied.”
“Life is a series of pulls back and forth. You want to do one thing, but you are bound to do something else. Something hurts you, yet you know it shouldn’t. You take certain things for granted, even when you know you should never take anything for granted. “A tension of opposites, like a pull on a rubber band. And most of us live somewhere in the middle.
“Love wins. Love always wins.”
“So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they’re busy doing things they think are important. This is because they’re chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning.”
“So, I said, in a reflexively cynical response, I guess the key to finding the meaning of life is to stop taking out the garbage?”
“The most important thing in life is to learn how to give out love, and to let it come in.”
“Let it come in. We think we don’t deserve love, we think if we let it in we’ll become too soft. But a wise man named Levine said it right. He said, ‘Love is the only rational act.’”
“I give myself a good cry if I need it. But then I concentrate on all the good things still in my life. On the people who are coming to see me. On the stories I’m going to hear. On you—if it’s Tuesday. Because we’re Tuesday people.”
I thought about all the people I knew who spent many of their waking hours feeling sorry for themselves. How useful it would be to put a daily limit on self-pity. Just a few tearful minutes, then on with the day. And if Morrie could do it, with such a horrible disease …
“You see,” he says to the girl, “you closed your eyes. That was the difference. Sometimes you cannot believe what you see, you have to believe what you feel. And if you are ever going to have other people trust you, you must feel that you can trust them, too—even when you’re in the dark. Even when you’re falling.”
“You need someone to probe you in that direction. It won’t just happen automatically.” I knew what he was saying. We all need teachers in our lives. And mine was sitting in front of me.
“Everyone knows they’re going to die, but nobody believes it. If we did, we would do things differently.”
“The truth is, Mitch,” he said, “once you learn how to die, you learn how to live.”
“Because,” Morrie continued, “most of us all walk around as if we’re sleepwalking. We really don’t experience the world fully, because we’re half-asleep, doing things we automatically think we have to do.”
“Oh, yes. You strip away all that stuff and you focus on the essentials. When you realize you are going to die, you see everything much differently.”
“Is it today, little bird?” he asked. “Is it today?”
“Without love, we are birds with broken wings.”
“Whenever people ask me about having children or not having children, I never tell them what to do,” Morrie said now, looking at a photo of his oldest son. “I simply say ‘There is no experience like having children.’ That’s all. There is no substitute for it. You cannot do it with a friend. You cannot do it with a lover. If you want the experience of having complete responsibility for another human being, and to learn how to love and bond in the deepest way, then you should have children.”
But detachment doesn’t mean you don’t let the experience penetrate you. On the contrary, you let it penetrate you fully. That’s how you are able to leave it.”
“I don’t want to leave the world in a state of fright. I want to know what’s happening, accept it, get to a peaceful place, and let go. Do you understand?
“I looked at Morrie and I suddenly knew why he so enjoyed my leaning over and adjusting his microphone, or fussing with the pillows, or wiping his eyes. Human touch. At seventy-eight, he was giving as an adult and taking as a child.”
“It’s very simple. As you grow, you learn more. If you stayed at twenty-two, you’d always be as ignorant as you were at twenty-two. Aging is not just decay, you know. It’s growth. It’s more than the negative that you’re going to die, it’s also the positive that you understand you’re going to die, and that you live a better life because of it.”
“The fact is, you are going to die eventually.” I nodded.
“You have to find what’s good and true and beautiful in your life as it is now. Looking back makes you competitive. And, age is not a competitive issue.”
“How can I be envious of where you are—when I’ve been there myself?”
“These were people so hungry for love that they were accepting substitutes. They were embracing material things and expecting a sort of hug back. But it never works. You can’t substitute material things for love or for gentleness or for tenderness or for a sense of comradeship.”
“Mitch, if you’re trying to show off for people at the top, forget it. They will look down at you anyhow. And if you’re trying to show off for people at the bottom, forget it. They will only envy you. Status will get you nowhere. Only an open heart will allow you to float equally between everyone.”
“When you’re in bed, you’re dead.”
“And love is how you stay alive, even after you are gone.”
“I think marriage is a very important thing to do, and you’re missing a hell of a lot if you don’t try it.”
“The way to do it, I think, isn’t to run away. You have to work at creating your own culture.
“We all have the same beginning—birth—and we all have the same end—death. So how different can we be?”
At one point, in the midst of “We’re number one!” he rises and yells, “What’s wrong with being number two?”
“Don’t let go too soon, but don’t hang on too long.”
“Love each other or die.”
“I gave you what I had,” he whispered. “You always do.”
“Forgive yourself before you die. Then forgive others.”
“Tears are okay.”
“I always wished I had done more with my work; I wished I had written more books. I used to beat myself up over it. Now I see that never did any good. Make peace. You need to make peace with yourself and everyone around you.”
“I mourn my dwindling time, but I cherish the chance it gives me to make things right.”
“Tell you what. After I’m dead, you talk. And I’ll listen.”
“Death is as natural as life. It’s part of the deal we made.”
“Mitch, it was a most incredible feeling. The sensation of accepting what was happening, being at peace. I was thinking about a dream I had last week, where I was crossing a bridge into something unknown. Being ready to move on to whatever is next.”
“A certain peace with the idea of dying. If we know, in the end, that we can ultimately have that peace with dying, then we can finally do the really hard thing.”
“Make peace with living.”
Everything that gets born, dies.”
“Death ends a life, not a relationship.”
“No way I could go back. I am a different self now. I’m different in my attitudes. I’m different appreciating my body, which I didn’t do fully before. I’m different in terms of trying to grapple with the big questions, the ultimate questions, the ones that won’t go away.
“Once you get your fingers on the important questions, you can’t turn away from them.”
After all these months, lying there, unable to move a leg or a foot—how could he find perfection in such an average day? Then I realized this was the whole point.
“There is no formula to relationships. They have to be negotiated in loving ways, with room for both parties, what they want and what they need, what they can do and what their life is like.”
“Love is when you are as concerned about someone else’s situation as you are about your own.”
“But that’s part of being human. Stop, renew, stop, renew.”
“Sometimes, when you’re losing someone, you hang on to whatever tradition you can.”
“None of us can undo what we’ve done, or relive a life already recorded. But if Professor Morris Schwartz taught me anything at all, it was this: there is no such thing as “too late” in life. He was changing until the day he said good-bye.”
Okaaaay…. Hope you like the quotes I picked. 🙂
Happy Reading.. 🙂
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