Sunday, March 08, 2009

Honor -- Part 1: How to Live With Life

A few moments ago, the idea of "honor" grabbed my attention. A reel of thoughts and stories from my life played in my mind, and I was able to look back at a few incidents through the lens of honor, or, its evil twin, dishonor.  

In no certain order, I thus blog what came to my mind.  

I don't know what honor really means, but I know that I treat myself with it. Closely linked to the word "honor" in my mind is an image of holding something up in outstretched palms, holding it delicately like we'd hold water in our hands, preventing it from falling. And now as I write this analogy I realize that none can prevent water from slipping between our fingers. Perhaps, honor here is not water -- that flow of events -- but the act of honor itself is to hold your hands together in this humility.  

So truly, I realize, I cannot hold flowing water in my hands. What I can do is to earnestly put my hands together, and lap up whatever water that is ordained for me. Only that is what matters, and that is what is honor and honorable: the intent with which I cup my hands together. Only in this way I know how humble my existence; how tremendously it is at the mercy of everything; how fragile is it nobility.  

I am glad I am writing this down, because my heart was aching. I experienced the evil twin, dishonor, a few moments ago. 

And now that I see how fragile honoring the flowing waters of life is, I can write -- perhaps with some necessary detachment -- about what I feel. I want to write down a few random stories. 

1 comment:

  1. This is where I should have posted...

    The concept of honor is corrupted, especially in social contexts. Loosing "honor" can drive people into extreme and desperate actions such as suicides, honor killings and alcoholism. The last one is common in Finland.

    I'd rather talk about integrity than honor. In my opinion honor is more culturally biased than integrity.

    I read an interesting article about integrity some months ago. I guess I'll read it again and write some thoughts about integrity.