A Contemplation on Japan’s Earthquake: Life is More

It’s been two days since the earthquake in Japan, yet safe in Bangkok I still feel a certain sadness for those in northern Japan.  Some entire villages were swept away. Entire families and communities gone just like that.  In a blink of an eye.  I cannot imagine.  I cannot say I understand how it must feel to be in the midst of this devastation because I am not there and I am not the one whose house was swept away or whose relatives are missing.  All I can say is that my thoughts are with those in Japan and that I pray the worst is over. 

This earthquake demonstrates how powerful nature is to destroy all in its path.  Nothing can withstand the force of 10 meter high waves hitting inland. Footage show entire houses being swept away as if they were toy houses and cars rolling around in the water like ice cubes bubbling up and down in water.   Some say it is nature’s way of “cleansing” itself, it is interesting.  Perhaps there will be a period when the world becomes calmer.  Perhaps there will be a period of harmony when we all become happier humans and turn to value each other more than the value of our assets.

What do we learn from all this earthquake?  More than I can summarize in this post, however, discussing it with Alex  a lot of it boils down to this:  One cannot plan one’s life completely

We humans (at least me anyways) like to think we can plan what will happen and when.  We like to think that we are in charge of our destiny and in control.  But think about it.  Are we really in control?
Can we really determine what will happen when and where? 

Of course there are certain things we can influence, like when to wake up and when to sleep, when to go eat…but in the overall scheme of things, do you know whether your usual trip to the office in the morning would include seeing the World Trade Centre being reduced to rubble in NYC?  Did you imagine your usual afternoon meeting in Tokyo to include one of the biggest earthquakes in history?  Did you think your visit to Christchurch would involve seeing the city in rubbles or that your visit to Haiti would see millions homeless?  Did you think your annual diving trip would involve you in a Tsunami?  Did you think you’ll meet the person of your dreams on a plane?  Would we know that we would see our loved ones die before our eyes and there is nothing we can do about it?  

We don’t know. A Japanese man says he saw his wife swept away.  What a feeling of helplessness it must be.

We don’t know what will happen.  We have no clue what will happen with our lives.  We can’t plan, we can’t control it.  We just have to embrace what life brings us.  Look around yourself and be grateful for what you have. See the beauty in life and value what has been given us.  Many of us (me included) like to forget and complain about how miserable everything is, how we wish this and that were better.   How we wish things turned out the way we want them to be.  Somethings things just aren’t perfect.

We have no control.  So go out and live your life.  Look around you and be happy with what life has given you.  Who knows, something may happen tomorrow or tonight?

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