Morrie Schwartz – one of the protagonists of the novel is the professor of sociology. It is stated, that he got this job by default, nevertheless, he is an excellent teacher. The action of the novel takes place for the time when he retires, as he starts losing control over his body (because of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis). Feeling, that his time is approaching, and he is obliged to share the wisdom of the meaning of life with the people surrounding him.
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His physical condition leaves him to wish better; nevertheless, he tries to keep fit, as there may be no time left for sharing his wisdom. ALS is the degeneration of muscles, so, Morrie constantly loses control over his body. His aphorism, “When you’re in bed, you’re dead,” is fully realized, when Morrie gets stuck to his bed. Nevertheless, he aims to struggle with his ALS and does not wish to stay in bed. Staying in bed is a kind of surrender for him, so he continues to study sitting in his armchair. (The truth is… once you learn how to die, you learn how to live. (Ablom, 2002. p. 23)).
More can be told of his emotional condition. He aims to live his last days as fully as possible. So studies, watches the photos of the people he loves, reads the books that he collected for his life. He striving to share his life experience with all the others, and he copes to persuade everyone. He acts by the means of love and friendship. Even thick-skinned people like Koppel – the national celebrity – get inspired by the words by Morrie.
The ethical system is the highest value for Morrie, and he teaches Mitch and other people, that initially, it is necessary to value ethics and morale.
Mitch is a person with a kind heart. He thinks that life turned its back on him, as he can succeed neither in his career nor in family life. He had worked himself nearly to death and got frustrated with the career and the decisions, that he had previously made for his life. He does not have much time to devote to his wife Janine, and he realizes that his life necessitates essential changes.
Mitch gets inspiration and encouragement from Morrie’s words. He finds that all his previous life appeared to be meaningless, and sometimes, he feels sorrow, that he had abandoned his dream to become a musician, and started chasing the dream of creating a career.
Only Morrie can feel and ruin the toughness that has grown around Mitch’s heart and he did it. Mitch felt, that Morrie is someone, who really can live his life to the fullest if only had an opportunity. He realizes the principles that Morrie taught him: value love over gold, be above the tabloid gossips and vanity, that had captured people’s lives. (You see,… you closed your eyes. That was the difference. Sometimes you cannot believe what you see, you have to believe what you feel. And if you are ever going to have people trust you, you must feel that you can trust them, too — even when you’re in the dark. Even when you’re falling (Albom, 2002. p. 87).) Mitch feels, that he wishes to know his life is lived to its full extent, certain that he has loved and forgiven himself and others as often and as sincerely as he could. No one lived his life so fully and impressively as Morrie did, and Mitch feels h wishes to do the same. Almost anything had left to change the life – to change the attitude towards it, and value every moment of life, as everyone is unique.
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Albom, Mitch. Tuesdays with Morrie: An Old Man, a Young Man, and Life’s Greatest Lesson Broadway publisher, 2002