Experiencing Life何 兆燦
Conrad Ho, written on 20 April 2019, Hong Kong, China
The richer the substantial content of life experiences life, the richer one’s life would be. There is no need to mention in details how important it is for the human being to experience life in terms of quality. What is being discussed here is how this can be done.
Many people would think hard in their heads to come up with an answer at this stage. It is certainly good to be so serious, but I am afraid that they are rushing it. It is just like when someone suggests that let’s go for a vacation together, then somebody would immediately think of how much money to spend and how to arrange it. In fact, this is too early to make decisions like those at this stage since we still haven’t made a decision of where the destination is yet!
Our brain is an organ that aims at efficiency. It particularly responds to questions by answering how to do things better. But doing things better does not guarantee happiness. If a person is not interested in what he/she is doing, no matter how well he/she can do it, there is still no interest. If there is no interest, where can happiness come from? Without happiness, we do not even need to mention about richness in life then.
Therefore, to experience life is to experience the things that your heart and mind are longing for – that is the highest principle. It is not your parents’ hearts and minds, nor the matters that you are competent to handle. If you say that you don’t know what your heart and mind is, it’s very simple, just try everything. Trying your luck is better than doing nothing! However, many people choose not to do anything when they don’t know. These people remain unchanged after several decades, without much progress at all.
Of course, having something to target is much better than randomly trying luck. You can recall your childhood, even your infant stage to see whether there is any behaviour that you did spontaneously without adult guidance or encouragement, and you keep on doing it. For example, when my elder son was two or three years old, his self-spontaneous actions were to constantly open and close doors and windows. He likes mechanics so much and naturally he chose to study engineering at university. In another case, the client recalled that when he was two to three years old, he liked to eat his bowl of rice with a bowl of pickles. He would chew it slowly to enjoy the process. In his 20s, after a few years of working in the field which he has studied for, he finally couldn’t stand it and changed his job to become a screenwriter and director. He is a kinesthetic person, having lots of feelings to express. To keep these feelings in heart would make him very uncomfortable.
Walking on the life path, everybody needs to explore his directions. No one can avoid so-called “mistakes”. Making mistakes would let you know which paths are not feasible. It helps narrow the scope of your exploration. In addition, it is a kind of tempering which helps people to have sufficient skills and strength to go on once they have chosen the right track. Conrad often talks to his two sons that as long as a girl likes you and you also like the girl, just fall in love with her and not to worry whether this love affair would last forever, or whether she is your ideal lover. Who knows if this girl will gradually become an ideal lover and lasts forever? Don’t diminish the chance of success by yourself. In addition, as long as both are sincere and enjoying the relationship, one should put consideration into “tricking” each other. In fact, it helps enhance the skills of loving. When the ideal lover does appear, you would know more about love, having greater chance to last longer with her. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, just narrow your scope and slowly walk onto the right track.
Human beings have evolved from apes for millions of years to reach the current stage. We are social animals. There is an innate impulse to integrate into the group. In the broader sense, people need to cooperate with the group, such as talking politely to the others, wearing clothes when go outdoors…etc. In terms of personal direction – the narrow sense, people have room to walk on their own path. In my early thirties, when I walked along the Everest trek in Nepal, I and met a man and a woman from Israel. They have once served as bodyguards to protect Israeli Prime Minister. Since they were in good physical conditions and could walked very fast with their backpacks. A trail that would take me 6-7 hours to finish would only take them 3 hours only. So they just spent half day walking and played joyfully for the rest of day. It would take me a lot of effort to walk the whole day and would fall asleep when I arrived at my mountain hut. In the broader sense, we were walking the same path – all hiking the Everest Trek. However, in narrower sense, they were playing, while I was taking effort – very different. We do not need to compare. Everyone just walk his/her own life path.
We also should not mind too much about how other people perceive us. In case of constructive proposals, we can listen. Otherwise, let them drift away with the wind! In fact, everyone is busy with his own affairs. As long as everybody walks on his own path, without hindering each other, then other people should not care too much about what you have done. In the same way, when the other party does not hinder you, why should you mind how the other party perceives you? Every person is a traveler on the life path enjoying his own journey. Walking along the life path with other people passing by, enjoying the companionship of each other. When everyone is getting away gradually from each other, just leave a good memory. There is no need to worry about other things!
Don’t misunderstand that I am spreading selfishness and ignoring others, it is just the opposite. I think this kind of life attitude would allow people to choose to enter the relationship in a refreshing manner, and then simply choose to leave without entanglement. This is better for both parties. Everyone is committed to being responsible for his/her own acts and not to be the victim. Everybody treats himself/herself as a master and should not wait to be saved by others. Everybody treats himself/herself as a hero, saving himself/herself only. There is no need to play the role of the others, just be yourself. Nevertheless, the position of the person next to you is already occupied by himself/herself.
Finally, be grateful. There is no promise that a certain event must happen in this world. Man does what he can, and God does what He will. There are too many possibilities that are out of your control. However, they could be the keys to your success or failure. If you are in good luck, then you are happy. On the contrary, you are adversely affected. According to the normal distribution theory in probability, your life should end up with the mixing of happiness and sorrow and they offset each other. For me, based on the aforesaid consumption, my life is in vain and meaningless. I would not care! My choice is that no matter what has happened, no matter how good or bad, I enjoy it. If I am in good luck, I will be happy by having direct benefit. If I am in bad luck, I will experience the negative feeling and enjoy such difference or change. When I feel happy every day, then would I not gradually know what happiness is? The reason is that human sensory system needs contrasts to make distinctions. In this way, I can maximize my feelings and experience the most in my life.