By Louay Benaabdelaali
By Louay Benaabdelaali
Morocco World News
Kenitra, February 12, 2013
Many people from my entourage criticize me for the fact that I am not having a job, any job I find, with a steady income to be, as they say, productive. They say that it is dangerous that I do not think seriously to prepare for the future aged life usually full of problems and hardship (that money will magically solve), that I will face great risks of having a future miserable life without big savings… I do not blame them. They are sunk in the bubble of conformism. I am not against the idea of having a job and a routine life.
However, I guess sitting 8 hours in an office doing things we do not like to do every day, complain about it, pretend it’s going to be okay after, and still do it anyway for years doesn’t seem as a good deal for me. Yet there is a reason behind all this, besides being lazy or financially fulfilled which some of you might think is the reason. It is not.
Back in the days during my childhood, I was taught about the fundamentals of my religion, Islam, by my grandfather (may he rest in peace). He was the only one in my family talking to me about this, maybe because my parents were not that religious or because they preferred to leave the matter for a wiser man.
I have been taught by my grand-father that life goes on, then it ends. It is precious, because it ends. The time is important and is to be spent doing the right things. Nobody knows when it is going to end and there is wisdom in that by the Creator so that one will receive one’s merit and reward following one’s beliefs and actions.
Since the early years of my adolescence, I had, for some reason, the conviction that I am going to leave this world at an early age, that I am going to die at my twenties. There was no specific reason for such belief. I cannot pretend to predict the future, but I was so sure about it that it has become a belief.
Many ideas were haunting my spirit very frequently: Today is the end. Tomorrow is not coming. Am I ready to meet Him? How many people did I help? How many did I hurt? How much positive impact have I made in my society? What did I do with the time, health, money and everything I had? such questions have been reminding me of the importance of my self-assessment. Beyond the spiritual fulfillment this has brought me, such conviction of a near death has been a great motivation to enjoy all aspects of life; putting in mind that I shouldn’t cross the limits into what might be against my religious beliefs and goodwill. I am not always successful with that, but I am doing my best.
In this path, I am trying hard to do things that bring me joy at the present moment following my gut feeling and what I think is best. It is not my dad, not my mother, not the neighbors’ son, not anybody’s decision but mine. Of course it is very important to ask for guidance and/or to be inspired by somebody, and also wise to think about the near future. Yet, the decision should be based on the fact that I am convinced that what I am doing is right for me, and that doing it will bring me personal joy and fulfillment at the present and maybe in the short future, if any.
I feel very lucky and blessed about all what I have in this life. I have been given many blessings: a shelter, an education, a loving family, a healthy shape… (I can go on for pages). It is the reason why I feel responsible to give something back and feel liable towards others who are not having the same life conditions I have. Giving back at the present moment of life takes the form of traveling around to share my experience and volunteer. Hopefully, in the coming future inshallah if Allah grants more years in my life, it would take another form and grow to a bigger scale in order to have much wider impact on a lot more people.
I engage in life-changing trips in order to find more about myself, I get lost to find myself, to discover what I want and learn from the experiences of other people whom I meet in the way and tell them about mine; and it is tremendously impactful and inspiring. This is my pursuit of happiness. I hope that you take the time to think and realize that the best moment to do what you wish for is now and the best moment in which you can spend your savings is the present. Remember, some people somewhere in the world are happy with half of what you have.
I am aware of the fact that I might prove myself wrong in the future (no human is ever free from error). Yet, I am doing what I like and what I think is right at the present moment. I might criticize the present Louay who is writing this article sometime in the future. I guess that’s how it should be. One should compare oneself with the person he/she was in the past, not with others. By the same token, try to evolve, grow wiser and be better than what one was by learning from mistakes, and pulling morals from experiences.
To learn from mistakes, one has to make them first. So dare to change, discover what you want and do it. Do not suck life out of you doing what you don’t like, as long as you have the choice (well, there is always a choice). Time is the only currency one has. Everything we do, we pay it with our “time bucket,” one second or one minute, one hour, one day at a time. The only constraint is that nobody knows how much time one has in the bucket. Some of us have a shorter time than the others. Some would have more (yet they may waste most of it living someone else’s life). It’s not about how much time you’d have, but what you do with it. Spend your time wisely doing things that will make you happy. You may not have much left.
If I die before you, tell others that I have had a happy life, tell them about this, tell them not to follow, not to copy but to take the lead of their life and to construct it themselves.
When I’m gone, remember me, and pray for me. Have a safe journey in the pursuit of happiness.
God bless you.