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The Death of Ivan Ilyich by Leo Tolstoy (reviews, summary and analysis)

Explore Tolstoy's profound masterpiece: 'The Death of Ivan Ilyich.' Get summaries and reviews in this insightful analysis.

Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910) is the greatest Russian classical writer. Not only do his three novels "War and Peace", "Anna Karenina" and "Resurrection" have permanent Charming, but many short stories and short stories he wrote are like exquisite sculptures that make people unable to put them down. 

The novellas "The Death of Ivan Ilyich", "Kreutzer Sonata" and "The Devil" written by Tolstoy in his later years are such artistic treasures. 

The material of "The Death of Ivan Ilyich" comes from the death of Ivan Ilyich Mechnikov, the judge of the Tula Court, whom the author was very familiar with. 

The pain he suffered from cancer before his death and the thought that his life was wasted became the basis for Tolstoy's conception of this novel. 

Ivan Ilyich's life is a typical example of the lives of thousands of bureaucrats in old Russia. 

After graduating from law school, he entered officialdom. He is not a corrupt official. 

He "obeys certain rules" and performs "all necessary procedures" when handling official duties, thus gaining "approval from people in high positions." This is true not only in official business but also in private life. 

His pleasures were always "indecent," and he even married because "those in high positions thought it was right." 

Ivan Ilyich is such a bureaucrat, a person who always adheres to the principle of "obeying the rules" and "not losing dignity". 

This is also true in family life so he puts a little bit of sincerity and livingness in his heart into Everything being suffocated. 

Just when Ivan Ilyich's career was going smoothly, he suddenly fell ill (suffered from cancer) and lay down in bed. 

At this time, he painfully experienced the indifference of the people around him (his colleagues and even relatives) towards his fate. He was in unbearable pain and tortured.

The novel designs two endings: one in which Yevgeny commits suicide with a pistol, and the other in which he kills the woman with a pistol. 

The novel's description of the great power of passion and the fierce conflict between passion and rational morality is profound and unparalleled. 

Tolstoy is not only a writer, but also a philosopher of life, educator, political commentator, and social activist. 

Similarly, his literary works are also rich and colorful. 

He not only painted a grand picture of history and war but also carefully reflected the life changes of the Russian aristocracy and peasants under the impact of huge social changes in the late 19th century. 

He also deeply explored Moral self-improvement and the meaning of life, as well as the three novels included in this book, which profoundly describes unique life phenomena such as death, lust, and fierce conflicts in human psychology. 

These are irreplaceable by other works. It also has long-term understanding and aesthetic value.

Book: The Death of Ivan Ilyich by Leo Tolstoy

The Death of Ivan Ilyich, first published in 1886, is a novella by Leo Tolstoy, considered one of the masterpieces of his late fiction, written shortly after his religious conversion in the late 1870s. -----Wikipedia

    • Originally published: 1886
    • Author: Leo Tolstoy
    • Genres: Novella, Fiction, Comedy
    • Characters: Ivan Ilyich, Peter Ivanovich, Praskovya Fëdorovna Golovin, Gerasim, Lisa Golovin
    • Language: Russian
    • Original text: Смерть Ивана Ильича at Russian
    • Translation: The Death of Ivan Ilyich

The Death of Ivan Ilyich by Leo Tolstoy

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About the Author: Leo Tolstoy

Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy (Russian: Лев Николаевич Толстой; commonly Leo Tolstoy in Anglophone countries) was a Russian writer who primarily wrote novels and short stories. Later in life, he also wrote plays and essays. 

His two most famous works, the novels War and Peace and Anna Karenina, are acknowledged as two of the greatest novels of all time and a pinnacle of realist fiction. Many consider Tolstoy to have been one of the world's greatest novelists. 

Tolstoy is equally known for his complicated and paradoxical persona and for his extreme moralistic and ascetic views, which he adopted after a moral crisis and spiritual awakening in the 1870s, after which he also became noted as a moral thinker and social reformer.

His literal interpretation of the ethical teachings of Jesus, centering on the Sermon on the Mount, caused him in later life to become a fervent Christian anarchist and anarcho-pacifist. 

His ideas on nonviolent resistance, expressed in such works as The Kingdom of God Is Within You, were to have a profound impact on such pivotal twentieth-century figures as Mohandas Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr.

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Book Summary

In the first section of the novel, news of Ivan Ilyich's death comes, followed by his funeral. In fact, the novel makes such a declaration right from the beginning of the title: Ivan Ilyich must die.

Why did Ivan Ilyich have to die? What makes a character condemned (by the author "cruelly") to death from the very beginning?

The illusion of pastoral life

The first half of Ivan Ilyich's life roughly went through the following events: graduating from law school with honors, serving in another province as a provincial governor's commissioner that his father had obtained for him, being appointed as a pre-trial court officer in another province, and Praskovya Fedorov, who came from a noble family, got married, was promoted to deputy prosecutor, had children one after another, and was transferred again...

Like all other ordinary people, Ivan Ilyich stepped into social life step by step and stepped into married life with the other step.

At first, life was still "pleasant and honorable". He took the set of ideas behind the lifestyle of those in high positions as the criteria for directing his own life, so he not only mingled like a fish in the water among the judiciary and wealthy aristocrats but also " "elegant coterie". 

Even choosing to marry Praskovya was half of the reason he recognized the essence of this kind of life, an inherent quality of being "light-hearted, always decent and approved by society". We might as well regard it as an idyllic life.

The first is the sudden cracks in marital life:

With the birth of the child, the attempts to feed himself and all the troubles that arise therefrom, plus the real and fake illnesses of the child and the mother (for which Ivan Ilyich had to show sympathy, but in reality (he knew nothing about them), for Ivan Ilyich the need to preserve his own little world outside the family became even more pressing.

Such a crack was almost beyond the orderly life experience of Ivan Ilyich, and he had to cover it up by turning his focus to official business, that is, to social life. 

However, the "small world" of social life did not conform to his expectations and proceeded according to certain established rules. Instead, it gradually split apart. In the end, due to a workplace struggle, he lost the opportunity to be promoted:

This happened in 1880, which was the most difficult year in Ivan Ilyich's life. During this year, on the one hand, he felt that his salary was not enough to maintain his life. On the other hand, he found that everyone had forgotten him... He felt that everyone had abandoned him... He was the only one who knew how much people treated him. It's not fair, his wife's nagging is so endless, that he can no longer make ends meet and is starting to go into debt...

The two kinds of life that hung above his head like a dome, cracks opened invariably. A transcendent crisis outside the dome seemed to be waiting for an opportunity to rush towards him, which could ruthlessly expose this pastoral at any time. The illusion of life.

Before this pastoral life collapsed completely, Ivan Ilyich experienced a brief comeback. As a result of obtaining the position in Petersburg, he felt that "his messed up life would return to its original pleasant and decent character". 

"The happy mood never left him, which was the result of the success of his career and the relationship with him." The harmony of the wife is the result of the two complementing each other.”

Ivan Ilyich arranged the new house with his own hands, and with the naivety of an early wealthy bourgeoisie, tried to reconstruct a new shelter that would protect him from the dangers - a shelter that would protect him from exposure to the primitive universe. 

The home space within the space - and regard it as the whole truth of the entire real life, everything can return to an orderly state. 

However, there is no essential difference between this new asylum and the previous one: "All this is just imitation of the same kind of people. 

His arrangement is so similar to others that it is not noticeable at all. But he feels It’s all very unique.”

Until a fatal disease - not only a terminal illness in the physical sense but also a metaphor for despair in Kierkegaard's sense - struck without warning, Ivan Ilyich was finally forced to discover that all this They are all illusions. 

This shelter will eventually collapse like the dome of the past, and the quaint pastoral scenery of the Sicilian shepherds will no longer exist.

Homelessness in a transcendental sense

Before talking about this fatal disease, it is necessary to answer this question: Where did the pastoral vision come from?

Greek classical philosophy since Plato believes that the essence of human beings lies in reason, while Hebrew culture uses the grace of the Messiah promised by God to mankind. 

Under the protection of reason and religious belief, the human soul maintains a perfect relationship with the external world. 

Georg Lukács called it the epic age in "Theory of the Novel", where there is a home of transcendent meaning and everything exists in harmony.

However, with the development of capitalism, mankind finally jumped from an unconscious pre-human life state (child) to the human (adult) stage, and mankind gained unprecedented freedom. 

Lukács continued: "Our world Becoming infinitely large, it hides in every corner more gifts and dangers than the Greek world, yet this richness sublates the fundamental and positive meaning of its existence: the totality." A gap cuts across the Between self (mind) and the world.

Fromm also saw the price that freedom brings. After losing the "umbilical cord", individuals as individuals will inevitably fall into loneliness and anxiety, which will lead to the dilemma of escaping freedom. 

Therefore, a kind of nostalgia attracts those homeless individuals to look back at the lost epic era and try various means to find their ideal hometown.

After the arrival of the disease, the new life that Ivan Ilych had carefully built fell into irreparable chaos. 

His past understanding of people and death was rewritten, and he will reach (fall) step by step to such a transcendental state. 

A homeless situation, where he has become deeply aware of his encounter as an individual with some kind of horrific experience of modernity, that is, he will share such an experience with people all over the world today—— "An experience of time and space, of self and others, of life's possibilities and dangers" (Marshall Berman).

The cruel road to arrival first begins with him realizing that he first exists as an individual rather than succumbing to the idea of ​​a human being. 

Thinking about it day and night on the sickbed, he overturned Kiesewetter's "Logic" Kai is a human being, and all people are subject to death, so Kai must die too" syllogism:

This example he had believed all his life to be true, but it applied only to Kai and never to him. That refers to Kai as a person, a person in general, and that's absolutely correct. But he was neither Kai nor a human being, he was a person who had always been completely different from all others; he was Vanya, first with his mother and father, Mitya and Volodya, Spending the whole day with toys, the coachman, and the nanny, and later with Katenka, I experienced the joys and pains of childhood, adolescence, and youth. Does Kai like the smell of striped balls as much as Vanya? Did Kai kiss his mother's hand like that? Did the pleats on Mother's silk skirt also rustle to Kai like that? Did he also get into trouble in law school over Pie? Is this how Kai fell in love? Can Kai also hold court cases like this? Kai is indeed going to die, and it is right for him to die, but for me, Vanya, and Ivan Ilyich, who have feelings and thoughts, this is another matter. I'm going to die too, it's impossible. This is absolutely terrible.

The individual has never been so bold as to smash the myth of metaphysical essence, face the existence of the self nakedly, and return from the human dimension to the dimension of "I". "I" is first "me" and then human beings.

At the same time, he discovered with childlike fear that even God had abandoned him:

As soon as Gerasim entered the next room, he couldn't bear it anymore and started crying like a child. He cried about his helplessness, his terrible loneliness, the cruelty of people, and God's abandonment of him. What are you doing all this for? Why did you bring me to this world? Why, why do you torture me so horribly? …

The myths of rationality and religious beliefs, which once seemed so solid, have all evaporated. Ivan Ilyich is like a savage from the primitive barbaric era, standing helpless on the ruins left after the shock of modern civilization (Benjamin's shock) invaded.

Looking for the lost home

The existential problem faced by Ivan Ilyich is not only what he has to experience and solve as a fictional character in the text. Rather, this problem also must be broadened from the text to the author's level, that is, Tolstoy. 

How should we use literary creation to reflect the symptoms of the times we live in: Since the meaning of the other side of the world has been separated and opposed to the life of the other side of the world, how should we do this in this age of no entity, purposelessness, and irrationality? To use heterogeneous and discrete novels to become the epic of this era in order to grasp this experience of modernity, in other words, to find the lost homeland through various attempts of novels?

Lukács believes that the disharmony between the mind and the world is reflected in two aspects (the former is either greater than or less than the latter). 

Therefore, the novel makes two corresponding attempts: in abstract idealism, the realm of the mind is repeatedly reduced; The novel dwells in it like a knight, so that the mind carefully becomes the goal. 

The more the knight conquers reality, the more alienating this conquest becomes; in disillusioned romanticism, the realm of the mind is expanded again and again, and the novel regards it as the only reality. , relying on the epic nature of time and memory to experientially affirm life.

In Tolstoy's attempt to transcend these two genres, there are still moments such as when Ivan Ilyich asks himself through his inner voice whether it is possible to "live as you used to, with the same mood." Comfortable and cheerful”:

Then he began to recall in his mind one by one the best moments of his pleasant life. But, oddly enough, all those best moments of a pleasant life look nothing like what they felt then - except for some of the earliest recollections of childhood. There were some things in childhood that were really pleasant, and if those things could come back, it would be possible to live on.

Just as Faust decided to commit suicide by taking poison, the sweet bells of Easter came to save him. This bell was by no means a religious power, but a Proustian revelation that awakened Faust's past memories, "This But the voice I was used to hearing when I was young has now come back to my life." Memory proves that time is at least something real that he can grasp. 

After Ivan Ilyich briefly experienced the salvation of this romanticism, he immediately withdrew and returned to reality: "The person who experienced this happy life no longer exists: this seems to be a memory about another person."

Tolstoy chose to turn from the cultural world to the natural world, and by magnifying the meaning of the moment of death (short but great), he negated the former to grasp the essence in the natural sense:

He suddenly understood that the things that troubled him and refused to go away were suddenly moving away from both sides and all directions of him. Since he pitied them, he should try to make them suffer no more. Free them and yourself from these pains. "How nice and simple," he thought. "But where is the pain?" he asked himself. "Where has it gone? Hello, pain, where are you?" He began to listen attentively. "Yes, this is it. What does it matter? Let it hurt." "But what about death? Where is it?" He looked for his old habitual fear of death, but could not find it. What is death like? Where is it? There is no fear because there is no death. Instead of death, there is light. "So that's what happened!" He suddenly said out loud, "How happy!" For him, all this happened in a moment, and the meaning of this moment will never change. To those waiting on the sidelines, his dying state lasted another two hours. Something was whirring in his chest, and his thin body was still shaking slightly. Later, the huffing and hoarseness in the throat became less and less.

Therefore, Ivan Ilyich must die. Only in a pathological death experience can he return to the animal-human self so strongly that public social life and private married life can be completely denied by him. 

He therefore believed that he could grasp the entire meaning of his life, that is, a meaning that is a natural attribute of animals. 

"With the suddenness of seeing through everything, man sees and grasps the essence that is about him and dominates him, that is, the meaning of his life." ". He "never died again."

This violent moment of return is still heterogeneous compared to the unnatural world. The inevitable result of the opposition between culture and nature is reflected in the novel and is concentrated in the following contradiction: while people are facing the things provided by the cultural world, Feeling dissatisfied, at the same time trying to seek a more essential reality in the natural world that emerged from the abandonment of the former.

What happens after this moment passes? People either get better and continue their non-essential lives, and "the paths pointed out by great moments lose the substance and reality of their direction as the moment passes"; or they really die, leaving behind a more disillusioned world. 

The deeper despair of romanticism is that the home we finally find is the home of animals. If reason and faith never existed in the primeval forests where we live, then the problems we face in the unnatural aspects of life would no longer exist... 

Therefore, what it transcends is only the form of social life and is far from epic. Through this, we still have no way to find the lost homeland of the epic era.

Book Review

When I read the novel "The Death of Ivan Ilyich" written by Tolstoy in his later years, I felt very enlightened, but I didn't know where to start. 

It wasn't until I read a book called "Living the Meaning of Life" written by a Jewish writer that I thought about how to find an angle to express my feelings.

First, let’s look at Tolstoy’s description of Ivan Ilyich:

As a teenager: "He was neither cold and rigid like his brother, nor reckless and reckless like his brother. He was somewhere in between, smart, flexible, lovable, and polite." 

And with the reputation of He completed his studies with excellent grades and entered the legal profession.

In youth: "Despite his youthful and frivolous pastimes, he was extremely cautious, businesslike, and even selfless in dealing with official matters. 

However, in social situations, he was often playful and full of witty remarks, and he was always affable and polite. Polite and, as his boss and his wife say, he is a good boy."

After he got married, he married a wife who looked pretty good and had a good family background. They were in love at first. 

Later, as their marriage progressed and the children were born one by one, her wife began to become nagging, which made him feel annoyed, and had quarrels and conflicts. 

They are constantly in trouble, but they still maintain the delicate balance of their marital relationship. 

Although my career encountered bottlenecks, it eventually got better and better. I achieved a good position, a good income, a decent house, a beautiful car, a capable wife, and a pair of children, and finally entered the High Court. Judgment Committee.

Then, at the age of 45, he got cancer. At first, he continued to work, until he could no longer continue. He was lying at home. It seemed that the best doctors and hospitals could no longer save him. 

In the torture of the disease, the attitude of the people around him changed. There were also changes. He found that he had become a useless trouble. He survived day after day in the torture of illness and fear of death. 

At this time, he was forced to re-examine his life, flashing back every episode, and now, he felt that life seemed meaningless. He has worked hard since he was a child to do his best, but at the end of the day, he felt that his wife taking care of him was just a routine matter. 

He could not see the emotion in her eyes. She was more concerned about whether their daughter could marry a good family; Colleagues who used to be harmonious visited me once and were never seen again. 

In despair, he gradually moved towards another world. Even when the news of his death came out, his colleagues were thinking about who should sit in the seat vacated by him. 

His funeral even became an opportunity for colleagues to arrange a poker game; and his wife, at the funeral What she is most concerned about is how much compensation she can get from the government. 

From beginning to end, the only people who pity him are a kind-hearted male servant who takes care of him personally and a 14-year-old son who looks like him. He sees a little light in the warmth given by the latter and thus rises to the world. to heaven.

Therefore, this is the life of a good man, who works hard, seems to have a successful career and a stable marriage, and has most of the things people want in the world. However, in his last life, he almost denied the meaning of his life.

This is a novel written by Tolstoy, who was in his eighties. I guess that when people of different ages see life, their feelings will be vastly different. 

In fact, many people, like the protagonist, often wonder, is our life really meaningful? Young people pursue their studies in order to enter a better university; young people work hard in order to obtain material accumulation; middle-aged people work hard to maintain their current situation; old people work as nannies to reduce the burden on their children. 

No matter how wonderful your life is, when you die, you should actually feel the same, that is, the same helplessness, fear, and despair.

If it is because of this, we will conclude that life is meaningless. Since the final result of hard work is nothing, then why bother to work hard. 

Therefore, today's young people are unwilling to struggle and are addicted to games and even drugs; middle-aged people are lingering, hovering between anxiety and collapse; old people are idle, ignored, and lonely on the edge of society. Really, is this the only way? I've always wanted answers too.

"Living the Meaning of Life" written by a Jewish psychologist, Viktor Frankl seems to give a bright direction to the meaning of life.

The author is a Jew. He stayed in the concentration camp for three full years. Those three years were hellish. He saw various people die tragically countless times. 

The main reason why he survived was that he had been preserving hope for life in despair. He has been silently talking to his beloved wife in his heart. He fantasizes that one day he will survive and continue to engage in his favorite career. 

It can be said that the power of the spirit saved him. Shortly after he was released from prison, he wrote the book "Living the Meaning of Life" and founded the famous "logotherapy" in psychiatry.

Everyone has his or her own unique mission, which cannot be replaced by others. Therefore, everyone's mission is specific, and one can only shoulder his or her own responsibility in dealing with life. Therefore, responsibility is the essence of human existence.

According to "logotherapy", we can discover the meaning of life in three different ways

  1. By creating a certain job or engaging in a certain career;
  2. By experiencing something or facing someone;
  3. Adopt an attitude when enduring inevitable suffering.

We can easily understand the first and second types. When a person has something to do, something to pursue, and someone to love, he will not feel that life is meaningless. 

When we feel that it is meaningless, we are actually in a dilemma in life, that is, at the third moment. At this time, it is easy to overthrow the outlook on life that we have established.

The author believes that suffering is not a necessary step to obtain the meaning of life. No, he never believes that asceticism and blind suffering can find more meaning. The inevitability of pain can never be ruled out. 

When you bravely accept the challenge of pain, life has meaning at that moment. He believes that the meaning of suffering does not lie in the suffering itself, but in discovering the reasons why the suffering occurs. Only then will the meaning be revealed.

Even in the concentration camp, when everyone believed that the prisoners were brutally abused physically and mentally and deprived of their dignity, the author himself did not think that his freedom was completely deprived, because although the body was imprisoned, his brain and thoughts could still Freedom, no prison or beating can take away this. 

The author used his own most miserable experience in the concentration camp as an annotation. Many inmates could not see hope, so they suffered nervous breakdowns. 

What they were thinking in their minds was "Can we get out of the concentration camp or go home? If not, all this will happen." It’s all meaningless” and died soon after. 

The author wanted to complete the manuscript that he had not completed before he was imprisoned, and also looked forward to seeing his lover again. 

Regarding the same suffering, what he was thinking about was "Does all this suffering and death have any meaning? If not, then It shouldn't be tolerated at all." If he wanted to answer this question, he had to live long enough to figure it out. 

So he outlived everyone who had ever been in a concentration camp and surpassed everyone's intelligence. Over the course of time, he finally figured out this problem and provided guidance to tens of millions of people. Isn't this the meaning of life?

1. Any short-term process in life is meaningful

This is the most important argument. Many people will ignore this when summarizing the meaning, just like they only see the majestic appearance of a building after it is completed, but do not see the cornerstones and wall bricks that laid the foundation of the building.

Usually, many episodes in our lives are short-lived, but this "ever-present" short-lived moment is meaningful. 

If you only sigh when you think of the short-term itself, and forget the rich fruits you once had, the joy and pain you once experienced, and the many things you once did, no matter what changes happen later, everything you have experienced will not be the same. 

It will be denied and cannot be forgotten. The past is meaningful, where I gained my life: the promises I kept, the love I gave, and the suffering I endured bravely and with dignity.

Return to the meaning of life itself. Many people who think life is meaningless focus on the overall meaning of life. It is not until the last moment of life that they review each stage of themselves frame by frame, and then draw a conclusion, just like Ivan Ilyich mentioned earlier. 

Many people see from his life and their own life that at the last moment of life, everything becomes in vain, so they feel that life is actually meaningless.

The author emphasizes that we must pay more attention to the inherent and inherent potential meanings in the individual situations that people face throughout their lives. A single situation, which is the fragment mentioned above, has meaning in its short-lived existence. 

This actually talks about our attitude towards daily life. Once you change your mind and feel that many short moments have meanings that cannot be erased, then life is the meaning formed by the summation of so many individual meanings.

Even in suffering, such as thinking about the love of my wife, the work to be completed, the sprouting of a certain green branch seen outside the iron fence, or the bright streak in the sky when working like a dog or eating like a pig. The sunset makes people feel beautiful and empowered. 

And we ordinary people should have such feelings in life. There are too many to list. Take Ivan Ilyich for example, the praise he received when he got excellent grades when he was studying, and when he met the girl he liked at the dance and made eye contact. 

Thrilling, the excitement when the child is born and the joy when he calls daddy for the first time, the recognition and praise of his family when he makes some achievements in his career, the joy of his family and his pride when he finally gets a good income and moves to a big house, etc. . . . . 

How could these past experiences be considered meaningless until the time of death? The moments when you gain more confidence because of your own efforts, the moments when your success makes your father proud, the moments when you take on a lot of responsibilities and make your family's life easier, you cannot erase it by yourself, if If you think about it from another angle, you will definitely feel very gratified. Your contribution has actually changed the fate of many people. Isn't this the meaning of life?

If you believe that the meaning of life does not have only one final summary, and admit that the meaning of life is hidden in countless short moments, then living is meaningful, because meaning can be traced everywhere.

2. If you look at the problem from a positive perspective, you will perceive more meaning.

This is also very important. Although it is certain that every life has its own meaning, how to evaluate it is actually also crucial. If the correct point of view cannot be refined, then the accumulation of original materials alone will not leave a correct impression.

A person who seems so successful feels that life is meaningless, so how can more ordinary people see the meaning of life? In fact, it is about how to view various opportunities and challenges and look at problems with a positive rather than a negative attitude. 

Only in this way can people feel more happy and more satisfied, and can also make people experience difficulties and setbacks.

For example, a person who is repeatedly unemployed will feel that he is useless and his life is meaningless. A person whose emotional life is in a mess feels that his life seems to be meaningless. A person who is seriously ill is more likely to feel that his life is meaningless. 

However, what the author tells us is that if you change your life, If you think about it from one angle and change your mentality, you will find another meaning. 

For example, although you are unemployed, maybe that career is not suitable for you and there should be other advantages. 

For example, you can do volunteer work and find out that you are needed; for example, emotional torture can make people more rational instead of blind. 

Should you change your method or make the wrong choice? Needing to start over again, this torture is not meaningless, and the old people should actually be happy with their lives. 

They have walked so many roads, had so many experiences, lived so fulfillingly, and tasted all the ups and downs in the world. This life is actually It’s worth it!

I would like to add that many middle-aged people, like Ivan Ilyich, feel that their lives are dull and meaningless. Being troubled by pressures such as a house, car, children, etc. all day long, it seems that there is no fun, life is very difficult, and then death is not reconciled. 

Some people will avoid such a life and pass all the responsibilities to other people in their family, while those who cannot escape may become depressed or even collapse and completely escape from this world. 

If the direction of comparison can be changed, don't go to a dead end. In fact, their lives are not as miserable as they imagined. 

For example, if a child studies poorly, does it cause more pain than a disabled child? For example, the work is tiring and annoying. Is it more difficult than working as a sanitation worker on the street? For example, the mortgage loan pressure is very high and I don’t know when I will be relieved. 

Think about it, I would be much happier living in a warm little home than living without a fixed place. For example, if a family member likes to complain about his wife's nagging nature, just think it's out of love. 

Isn't it more pleasant than a marginalized person whom no one cares about is not seen by anyone and has nowhere to go? For example, if you fail to start a business again, it seems to prove that your life is a joke, but you are still alive after all. 

Is the initial misfortune you encountered more than the cold treatment and injustice suffered by the entrepreneur with cerebral palsy who is now the number one cheongsam seller on Taobao?

When objective conditions do not change and people's thoughts change, everything will actually take a new turn. As for the feeling of life, in fact, everything is ultimately your own evaluation, not the worldly evaluation of others. Others don't care about you that much, so be kind to yourself.

3. Enrich your heart and make it easier to see the beauty of life

We have the materials and the attitude, but how can we find the key central vocabulary more quickly? This requires a certain ability to summarize, organize, and analyze feelings in order to do so.

"How can a person see the meaning of his life, even in its various small stages, which is: nourishing inner freedom, embracing nature, art, poetry, and literature, etc., feeling the love for family and friends, is Very important. Personal choices, actions, relationships, hobbies, and even simple pleasures can give life meaning."

This is easy to understand and does not require much explanation. If your heart is full enough, you will be more sensitive to the changes and beauty in the world. Your heart will be filled with beautiful things and emotions, and you will not be so easy to change. It must dry up and become dark, moldy, and rotten.

Life is very long. If you remember it into small fragments, each fragment has its own meaning. The sum of these meanings is the many meanings of life and the value of living. Life is short. If you only want to give it a word to evaluate its meaning, and if you find the wrong word, your life may be just like a wisp of smoke.

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