Tuesdays with Morrie

Tuesdays with Morrie
Photo by Olga Tutunaru / Unsplash

Genre: Philosophical Novel

Author: Mitch Albom

The truth is, Mitch, once you learn how to die, you learn how to live.

At my workplace, a common mantra is “Always begin with the end in mind”. Got it? It's about envisioning outcomes before planning any program and working backward to design it in a way that ensures those outcomes. This principle resonated with me while reading this book. Death is the ultimate outcome of our lives. So, how am I planning and living my life?

Written by Mitch Albom, “Tuesdays with Morrie” is a short and sweet novel packed with enriching life lessons from his favorite sociology professor at Brandeis University, Morrie Schwartz. While Mitch promised that he was going to stay in touch with his beloved professor at his graduation fifteen years ago, life got in the way, he got caught up in the rat race of life like most adults do and lost touch with Morrie. However, destiny had a plan for them. Mitch discovers his professor years later, finding that he is suffering from a terminal neurological disorder called Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). And yet again, fifteen years later, Morrie becomes Mitch’s life teacher.

You may think this is some sort of morbid book that talks about death and a dying person, while the book is the exact opposite and provides profound wisdom about life and the way of living to the fullest.

Titled after their regular Tuesday meetings, this book covers the 14 sessions where Morrie shares wisdom on topics like love, marriage, family, death, money, culture, forgiveness, letting go, and so on. As you flip the pages of this book or listen to the audio version (like I did), you cannot stop loving Morrie and his personality. Think of someone who has a loving and calming personality, whose thoughts and beliefs in life make you feel like “How can someone be so Zen, so at peace?”, I want that too!

Morrie’s life lessons are simple and heartwarming. Here are some of my favorite quotes from the book:

The most important thing in life is to learn how to give out love, and to let it come in.”
The culture we have does not make people feel about themselves. And you have to be strong enough to say if the culture doesn’t work, don’t buy it.
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.
Don't let go too soon, but don't hang on too long.
The fact is, there is no foundation, no secure ground, upon which people may stand today if it isn't the family. It's become quite clear to me as I've been sick. If you don't have the support and love and caring and concern that you get from a family, you don't have much at all. Love is so supremely important.

Like Mitch, most of us are caught up in the rat race of life, losing the sense of what’s most important to us and where we need to prioritize our focus. As I listened to Morrie’s golden lessons, I envied Mitch for having a personal mentor. Although I may not have had a Morrie in my life yet, I was glad that I picked this book. Isn’t it the beauty of reading that you can find your own “guru” in people you may have never seen or heard of until you start reading about them?

This book gives one a lot of food for thought and an opportunity to reflect and introspect on our own life. One of the things I keep thinking about these days is how I want my life to look should I be on a deathbed and reflect. When I find myself confused about something, this question guides my decision-making.

Not all books are worth reading multiple times, but “Tuesdays with Morrie” is an exception. Since we are fairly at the beginning of the year, this might be a good read to reflect on our current way of living and if it needs any change. It’s not a big bulky one, and the audiobook was just 3 hours long.

If you ask me, I’d say don’t miss out on Morrie’s life lessons. It’s a great book, especially if you feel like you are lost and need guidance. Morrie can be your mentor through this book. So, what are you waiting for? Get a copy of the book (or audiobook) and get started!

Happy Reading 😊

See you in the next blog post!