There are a few books out there that have really shaped or changed my life. I will be discussing them from time to time here. One of the books that had such an impact on me was “The Unbearable Lightness of Being” by Milan Kundera. I would highly recommend reading this book. I love the philosophy of it. Two of my favourite passages or quotes from the book are as follows:
“We can never know what to want, because, living only one life, we can neither compare it with our previous lives nor perfect it in our lives to come.”
“There is no means of testing which decision is better, because there is no basis for comparison. We live everything as it comes, without warning, like an actor going on cold. And what can life be worth if the first rehearsal for life is life itself? That is why life is always like a sketch. No, “sketch” is not quite a word, because a sketch is an outline of something, the groundwork for a picture, whereas the sketch that is our life is a sketch for nothing, an outline with no picture.”
― Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being
These are two philosophies I have been trying to incorporate in my life more and more. The fact that you can never truly know which decision is the best for yourself until you have already made it and live it. Only then will you discover if it is the right one or the wrong one. It is daunting in some ways because we can’t always change tracks from the incorrect decision and go back to the one that may have been right for us. There are many factors that can come into play there. Having said that if something is really right for us we will find a way to make it happen or work. It may not be exactly what we had before or what we envisioned, but it can be very valuable none the less.
Even if one takes the wrong path there is great wisdom in what we will find there. A great deal of learning comes from the wrong turns we make rather than the right ones. This allows us to learn and grow and to appreciate the paths that are better for us when we discover them. That is why once we have made the decision we have to forge down the path. Time will reveal to us whether we have made the correct decision for ourselves. Though it does take some reflection and introspection to realize this. Many people choose poor paths or ones that aren’t right for them but never pay attention to what they have learned from those choices. So they end up taking that wrong path again and again.
Even if a path is not perfect for you there can be a great deal of rewards and pleasure there if you are willing to keep an open mind. Appreciate the great moments you have while you have the opportunity. For you never know when they may come again or when they may cease completely. We often end up regretting those things we never did far more than those we gave our honest effort to. I can think of many of those in my life, though at the same time one can’t go back and change that path. You can only resolve to live it differently in the future. Though sometimes it is easier said than done.