Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Nice quote from TKAMB...

Last Sunday, I finished the last few pages of Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird.

It was an easy read filled with simple life lessons that are worth abiding to for an entire life.

The book first came into my radar back in university. I was a sophomore then. One of my professor friends told me I should ready Harper Lee's work. Hmm, I'm wondering now why it took me this long to pick up the book and start reading it.

It had to take a recent news article that a sequel to the book will be released later this year for me to be pushed to get started with the book.

Well, I'm actually glad I finally got to read it.

It may have been published in 1960, but the values to be picked up from the book are still relevant until today and I daresay, will continue to be relevant in the next 100 years.

Above is one of the quotes that I like from the book.

I firmly believe in this quote. When I was fresh out of university, I handled a volunteer program whereby students were sent to far-flung areas in the Philippines. The students would stay with a host family for two to three weeks. The aim of the program was simple: live the way of life of the host family/community.

Prior to deployment, I had to go visit the communities/families, as well as our local partner group, and assess their readiness to adopt the students. Most communities took a whole day's journey on rough roads and the most uncomfortable modes of transportation. In some cases, it even involved a hike, crossing streams/rivers, and so on. Naturally, there was no electricity. There was no Internet. The mobile phone signal comes and goes.

In these areas, far from the four walls of the university, were life lessons waiting to be learned.

The most basic of these is this: for one to be able to better serve others, one needs to understand how their way of life is. This completely echoes Atticus Finch's words in Harper Lee's work, doesn't it?

Years after I've left that volunteer management work, up until today, I still believe in that premise that putting oneself in another person's shoes is one of the best ways to understand that person.

Think about it for a moment. One will understand why.

On another note, I'm glad that I finished a second book for 2015. I should start on a new book for March. Hmm, which title to read, eh?

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