as a part of my believes I trust that everything that happens happens for a reason. Though I admit sometimes it’s hard not to mourn for lost things but to allow something beneficial to grow out of the wound. So when I went to Israel, it was hardly more then by chance – when I decided to spend some time abroad I told every deity that might listen: “Guys this is your chance to send me to wherever I am to find my way.” And of course they took it and I ended up in Israel which gave to me the strongest vision of my path that I ever had.
Anyhow, this is one of the first differences that came to my mind after I had spent some time in Israel: That people there tend to live the day. More then in Europe, I mean. For European youngsters tomorrow is all that counts: Having a good education so they can earn money / status / [insert here] later on. So that they can spend their five minutes of leisure time in that posh country club. You are always asked to wait. Wait until you graduated from high school. Wait until you have learned a job or gotten your B.A. / M.A. / whatsoever. Wait until you have settled down into life and your job before you are even to consider setting up a family. Whatever you do, for god’s sake, just don’t do it now. Later is the time. Not now. And one day you are likely to wake up realising that that’s it: Life’s over. You are 89 years old, have a wife/husband and a bunch of offspring and of course that Swiss bank account nearly exploding from overflown.
Yet what does it help? Can you take your wealth with you to the other realms? Can you take all those diplomas with you or the reputation you earned? You can’t even take that mate with you that you might have worked the hardest for. As far as I am considered there is only one single thing you can take with you to wherever your journey leads: Experience. Stories. Stories written by life. True ones – the really exciting ones. And besides: them being retold is your pathway to immortality even on earth; the closest you can come to it. In the end: Are you really dead as long as you are been remembered?
For the Asatru, the ancient Norse path, it’s the table of Valhalla where the warriors will sit and feast with the gods after they died in battle – of whatever kind. And guess what they will do besides getting drunk and duelling each other and all of that warrior-stuff. Right: They’ll tell each other about what they did. They’ll go into every detail of their glorious battlesuntil everybody knows them inside out. And then there’ll be more warriors to join in with their stories soit will never get boring in eternity. Not the worst way to spend one’s afterlife if you ask me. Certainly weee better then sitting around on a cloud surrounded by winged Christians playing the harp and praising a bearded, male god. Not to forget about those nasty halos … – sorry guys (Though I suppose story-telling might come in handy there too).
I grew up being a Generation-X kid. A.k.a. “no future”-Generation. Yet the longer I think about what happened to my generation the surer I get that what we suffered from wasn’t quite “no future” but rather “too much future”.The future others pressed upon us and others wanted us to have. We all were to become doctors and lawyers and live other people’s dreams. However what we experienced was more of a world that slowly broke down, instead of that wonderful place of unknown opportunities we were told about. How many of us had to realise that their middle class parents where coming closer and closer to lower class? How many had to see that things that during our childhood had been taken as granted all of a sudden were hardly affordable. What we did, though coming as a shock, was mereley what every generation of youth had done before: We took refuge within the opposite and created our world of “no future” trying to forget about the future that just didn’t seem to fit by dancing at our parties and hiding in our electronic lifes.
Living in Israel for the first time of my life I realised what I might have known by mind but certainly not by soul: That I was mortal. That there was that guy sitting in Tehran, just around the corner, of whom I absolutely believed that he might press the button and turn the city I had come to be happy was living in into another memorial site. And me, too, of course. That I could blow up in the bus going to Jerusalem for errands. I passed our house’s bomb shelter every day, had its key with me all the time and a gas mask underneath my bed. Yet with all of that for the first time in my life I felt truly alive. This was my survival strategy.
However it became more then a survival strategy. It was the present Israel gave to me. The thing that made all the pieces of the puzzle go together and draw a beautiful picture; a mosaic of momentsgathered for eternity. What it all comes down to is that it’s not that important to live a long live but an intense one.
with philosophical greetings