The truth is that we all will die someday. But we remain so heavily entangled in our lives that we never spare a thought to death. Illness however comes to our aid in such times and remains a constant reminder of our ultimate goal in life- the grave.
Illness, I believe is also a great teacher. Illness which brings along with itself incapacity and frailty serves as a speed breaker in our lives which zoom in an uncontrolled fashion. As we lie down in pain and suffering,there is always the philosopher in us who relishes the few moments of solitude for it is the infirmity which often helps us see things with greater clarity.
A longer convalescence only means that you can unleash your thoughts and ideas without being disturbed by day to day conundrums. Let the diligent reader not suspect that I am a sadist. I have indeed been through nasty bouts of illness myself ranging from chicken pox to the fatal Dengue but every time I recovered from a serious onslaught of illness I experienced not just physical healing but also great philosophical healing. Lets face it- The most powerful evil force that restricts our growth is Resistance. Resistance pulls us away from our instincts, allowing us to settle for mediocrity rather than fighting for the place we truly deserve. And the only element which can help us tear apart this resistance is a stiffened resolve.(See, The War of Art)
We mostly underestimate our worth and take ourselves lightly unless we have something to fight for. Illness is one such instance where men outdo themselves and grow into better human beings. Had it not been for the fatal Lung Cancer, Walter White would never have realised his leadership capabilities. (See, Breaking Bad)
I dont intend this article of mine to sound like a study in self help. I only wish to highlight the philosophical healing that occurs in the period of illness. Illness is indeed a great teacher. Convalescence gives breaks our ego and the myth of physical strength.
When I started writing this piece, I had thrown up twice, made multiple visits to the loo and lay feebly on my bed slowly sipping down salts. My stomach ached and my body did not support physical activity and only in such decrepit moments of weakness when physical activity is completely shut, mental activity takes primacy.
I had expected a longer period of illness, but by the next morning, I was on my feet. My work called upon me again and the philosophical and poetic self of mine took a back seat.
On my bed in illness, I had written a major part of this article. For almost 10 days after that I couldn’t complete it untill today.
I hope illness keeps attacking me again and again. I hope I have a longer convalescence only to recover again.