Dear H,

On Friday, I met a dear friend, and I told her how good things seemed to flow into my direction very easily lately. I am thankful for that, of course, because a year ago (and the years before that), I found myself struggling to get the things that I want, working real hard to make my dreams come true. Everything came to me with lots of hard work, and at the end of the day I found myself drenched in tears and felt really tired. I told her that since last year, I have been feeling… really light.

Now, I can see myself, realizing that I am not working ‘hard’, not struggling, not fighting—yet things are coming my way, one by one: the things I’ve always wanted, the things I’ve always desired. These things flow into my direction as if someone’s swinging a magic wand. At times it feels effortless, without me even trying to grab them.

My friend told me that maybe that’s the rule of life. That you just have to let things flow and not fighting or struggling with it. The more you let things flow, the more you ‘surrender’ yourself to Life and accept things as they are, the easier life would feel and would be to you. I found this answer both calming and beautiful.

I remember that we said this all the time: if it’s meant to be, it will happen. And I can see how it echoes with the conversation I was having with my friend.

Later, when I got home, I opened my Taoism book and found a quote from Lao Tzu: “Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them. That only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.”

Somehow, with no particular reason, I looked up the word “Islam” and realized that the word itself (though it was derived from the word “salaam“: peace and safety), in Arabic, “Islam” itself means “surrender“. There are many ways in which people try to interpret the word “surrender”, but I found this one suits me best: (surrender to) abandon oneself entirely to (a powerful emotion or influence); give in to.

In Islam, I believe this could mean “abandon oneself entirely to God” or “give in to Allah“. From a more universal point of view, I see it as “abandoning oneself entirely to Love” and “giving in to Life“.

Tao and Islam. It’s amazing, our ability to find similarities when we’re looking for one, and our ability to spot differences when we’re aiming to spot one.

Love, #me.


13 Responses

  1. Halooo… baca tulisan ini jadi inget saya sendiri kemarin-kemarin. I wanted something soooo bad, i struggled, made efforts, yet it never came to me. I never got it. sementara orang-orang di sekitar saya satu per satu mendapatkan apa yang saya mau itu untuk mereka sendiri, dan (sepertinya) dengan gampangnya.

    like you, i got to the point where i felt so tired, asking questions to The Big Guy up there and cried. That’s exactly when Surf’s Up is on TV. Iya, film kartun pinguin itu, yang sebenernya saya ga suka, tapi pas kebetulan lagi mejeng di TV. Karena sibuk marah dan nangis jadi ga sempet dipindahin. hihih ๐Ÿ˜€ Di situ sang legenda surfing yang sedang mengajar sang tokoh utama surfing bilang, “Don’t fight the wave, kid! Don’t fight the wave..”. Ikuti arus ombaknya, jangan dilawan, dan kamu akan bisa naik. Saat itu juga saya berenti nangis dan mengikuti arus ombak yang lewat. I still haven’t got what I wanted, but I’m sure the wave will take me up one day. ๐Ÿ™‚

    *maap, kok komennya panjang amat ya… :))*

    1. Nggak apa-apa! Aku senang banget kalo ada yang komen panjang sambil cerita gini :’) Lucu ya, di mana selalu ada “pesan-pesan” tersembunyi yang diantarkan kepada kita lewat dialog di film, plang jalan, kutipan di restoran, apapun itu—dan jadi berkesan karena pada saat itu kita memperhatikan dan siap mendengarkan ๐Ÿ™‚ If only we’re that attentive everyday, imagine how many messages can be delivered to us! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Whoaaaa… This gave me chill, Kakak Hanny! I will start letting things happen as it should be. Thanks for this ๐Ÿ™‚

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Legs and Apples
Do it because itโ€™s fun. Because it brings you joy; because itโ€™s meaningful to you. Do it because it gives you simple tiny pleasures. Do it because it makes you smile.
The view from De Klok
I took another digital detox this weekendโ€”I limited myself to a 5-minute screen time on Saturday and Sunday to quickly check my business account. I closed my social media account for the rest of the days.
Hanny illustrator
I am an Indonesian writer/artist/illustrator and stationery web shop owner (Cafe Analog) based in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. I love facilitating writing/creative workshops and retreats, especially when they are tied to self-exploration and self-expression. In Indonesian, 'beradadisini' means being here. So, here I am, documenting lifeโ€”one word at a time.