Friday, May 28, 2010

Penniless in Korea

Sometimes I briefly succumb to the urge to wonder just what the hell I think I’m doing.

This morning is one of those in which I am encumbered with feelings of doubt. It’s a grey, cloudy, cold day outside, and the bullhorn vendors have taken on a somewhat hostile tone, sounding like they are spewing out guttural, totalitarian propaganda even though they are just talking about vegetables. Buying a coffee this morning, I am astonished by the dwindling stack of Won in my wallet. Perhaps now is a good time to review my motivations for travelling.

I believe that in life, to merely collect things, objects, is falling into a sinister trap of materialism, and from that barren soil the spirit has a difficult time in flourishing to it’s natural end. I’ve always in life felt a sort of wild exultation after meeting and overcoming – or even failing at a challenge. As long as I’m in a new, different situation, far away from the ennui of the daily western routine, I get a sense as if I’m moving forward spiritually.

It seems to me that the focus of our lives should then be to collect experience, as if they were objects of great value. I know for a fact that after we die, we can not take our wealth, plasma televisions and clothing with us, but I have the sneaking suspicion that our soul is inseparable from our experience.

In a way I believe we must take pleasure from our doubts, fears and pains, as they are required points of growth for our spirits. Indeed, if everything were easy and there were no challenges, failures or disasters in life I doubt growth of the soul would be possible.

Perhaps it’s a universal confirmation to the thoughts I’m trying to express right now, but I just received a call from Mr Han, and he is quite insistent on my writing some textbooks for him, and would like me to start immediately.

The bullhorn vendors are taking on a sudden sweet tone to my ears.

1 comment:

  1. "but I have the sneaking suspicion that our soul is inseparable from our experience"

    Yes, I think you're right, and yours has traveled far, and is rich, indeed, my friend.