Therefore in tribute to .. er... myself and my late paternal granddad whose death made me a better man, I shall sum up my life lessons in this ghost post, which will probably never be read by anyone other than my sons or daughters to be.
I've always regretted the way I treated my granddad, who loved and pampered me so much, so much so that I was made use of to get things for my cousins (well I got to know about it because my cousin shared it with me recently, reminiscing of the good ol' days). Of course I was too young back then to know what was happening around me, or to appreciate the things or people around me. My primary school teacher had once said that we shouldn't cry when our love ones passes away, cos their spirit will still linger around, and upon seeing his/her family members crying, would surely be heartbroken. Which was why I, held my tears back when I saw my late granddad laying motionless on his bed, lifeless, as if all color was drained out from him. It was a feeling I will never forget, because my guilt was double rummy - not only had I not cried at his deathbed, I wasn't even there during his final hours.
You see, I wanted to play with my best friend so much that I insisted on going to his house to play with him. He was staying just a few blocks down, and though it felt important then, I couldn't even remember a single thing about it. All I remembered was returning home to a granddad who had left us, and my grandmother saying "I wasn't even around when he died, I even went to my friend's house to play..." something of that sort.
I guess many of us may have experienced something like that, an event so significant that it changes our lives. Back then, I was only primary 4, 10 years old. Before that, I was always intrigued about how I came into this world.
I remembered the day I gained consciousness, the day I live, the first day of my life, nope, not the moment when I popped out of my mum's womb, but the day I actually experienced reality. It was weird, I can't remember how old I was back then, all I remember was a dream, a nightmare to be exact, about how I had thrown a rolled up chocolate wrapper at the foot of my bed, and a monster evolving from that wrapper.
I woke up from that nightmare, and I became conscious, for the first time. It's weird to say this, but it kinda felt as if my soul entered an empty capsule, an empty human capsule, that is now me. I tried recalling the past, even tried to remember "yesterday", but I couldn't. My mind was completely shut, blank. It was weird though, that I knew where to go, like going to the toilet, and who the people are around me, like calling my granddad Ah Gong and grandmother Ah Po etc. It was the strangest feeling, which till this very day still haunts me.
But I believe I have hypothesized an answer to this lifelong question I've always had... I had believed it was reincarnation, that my soul somehow entered this body of me, and my belief manifested over the years due to the lack of answers. But now, I believe it's because there's a certain age and time we humans gain consciousness, it's not the same for everyone, similar but not identical. And that was why I came to "suddenly see and feel" this world. Which also explains why I was able to know where to go in my grandparent's house without even recognising it, and why I know my grandparents were my grandparents and not anyone else... my subconscious mind being the answer.
Truth be told, I will never truly know the answer. It's a hypothesis, the most logical scientific answer I can come up with. You see, ever since my poly days, I ventured onto the route of science. I majored in it and it made me the way I am today... sceptical of the world, always asking questions, and never believing in a single answer.
Now that you've read a part of a pivotal phase in my life, as well as my thinking/life philosophy, let me officially welcome you to my life.
1. Never believe in anything completely
2. Not everything is as what it seems
3. Communication is key
4. Speak up, be a master of confrontations
5. Live a life without regrets
6. Expect the Unexpected
7. Knowledge is power
8. Never stop learning (it's where you gain life experiences, learn life lessons)
9. Different people have different kinds of geniuses
10. Do not succumb to conformity
11. Self reflection is a necessity to better oneself
12. Embrace Loneliness to become a stronger person
13. Think positive, to improve your quality of life
14. There's no definite right or wrong, accept it
15. It's not the job, but the person which makes the job
16. Sincerity is the foundation for connections
And that's the last advice I have for you. These philosophies, life lessons are an integral part of my life, and if you're wondering why I'm disclosing this only now (of course there's a reason other than sharing, haven't you learnt anything from my first few points?) is because of my trip to Cebu tomorrow.
I've no stranger to travelling abroad, but Cebu pose certain incalculable risks, typhoons and kidnappings. Live a life without regrets. And that was why I finally pushed myself to "pen" down my life philosophies, in hope that it would benefit others, just as it has always benefited me. I guess life lessons' can't really be taught, it can only be experienced, and most parts of my life, I have already disclosed in this post. If many of you don't know me personally, I'm actually a very private person, despite the love to share, I'm very careful with posting things online, be it ideologies, comments, or photos, because ultimately, I still want my life, to be mine.
And finally, why did I end at 16 points.? Isn't it weird? Why didn't I "bother" to round it up to 20 or round it down to 15 so that it looks better? My reply... why not? Why should I conform to the norm of a nicely rounded number just so that my points seems more complete? Why should I force myself to squeeze out 4 more points when I don't, or collapse one, when each and every point comes straight from my heart?
The truth is, I had initially planned for 10 points, but I refuse to be confined by my own limitations. My wife made a comment once, as to why my life always seem to be so interesting. I'm not sure how true that is, it could be because I expose myself to more things, giving me more opportunities to experience more interesting events, it's a numbers game, or because I'm more open in sharing what seemed to be rather mundane or perhaps my recounting of them's entertaining. Either way, my encounters about my near-death diving experiences, my broad daylight mugging in Barcelona Plaza De Catalunya, and my real-life encounters with the unknown have all taught me a thing or 2 in life, all contributing to the life lessons in the post.
I guess the only constant is change, but it isn't the most important part of an equation. It's the variables. It's the variables which make each and every equation different. And the most important variable, is you.