By Roshan Shah
There are different metaphors one could use to describe life. A common one is to consider it as a journey. A journey has a starting point and also an ending point or destination.
If you’ve been on a long train journey, you might have noticed how not long after the train starts people begin to make themselves at home. They strike up conversations with their fellow passengers. They admire the changing scenery outside. They munch on eatables and enjoy a good nap every once in a while. They watch films and listen to songs on their mobile phones. And so on. They do all these many things to keep themselves amused and busy. But when the train begins to approach their destination, they stop all these activities. They now get busy packing up their luggage that’s scattered about and wait expectantly for the train to finally draw into the railway station.
So, too, with life. When we’ve been through years of living on this planet, doing this and that, and finally begin to approach the end of our journey here, we, too, must begin the process of ‘packing up’ our ‘luggage’ that’s lying around, like passengers on a long train journey who are about to arrive at their destination.
This ‘packing up’ of our ‘luggage’ that’s strewn about could mean different things to different people. It could, for instance, mean:
· Spending more time with God than we hitherto have, making up for time that we’ve wasted on frivolities and being unnecessarily ‘busy’, because of which we failed to cultivate a close relationship with the Creator.
· Doing acts of service to our fellow creatures as a way of serving God—which is a task that we may have neglected all along.
· Introspecting and asking God’s forgiveness for the wrongs we’ve done over the years
· Reaching out to people whom we may have wronged and seeking their forgiveness before it is too late to be able to do so. In this way, we may be able to depart from this world and enter the next realm with a lighter conscience.
· Forgiving all those who have wronged us. In this way, we may be able get over the bitterness that may have weighed us down for years.
· Loosening attachments to people, things and ideas that tie us down.
· Lightening our load by distributing things that we may have accumulated over the years which may be of better use to others.
· Preparing a will to ensure that once we depart from this planet not just some of our relatives but also poor people and organizations that are working for good causes can benefit from an adequate share of the material wealth we may have been blessed with.
· Clearing any debts we owe to anybody.
· Preparing to happily and gracefully accept the reality of our impending death, in the joy of meeting the Lord—just as train passengers enthusiastically await their train finally arriving at its destination, when they may at last be able to meet their waiting relatives and friends!