You’ve heard it.
Life is like a wheel. Sometimes you are up, sometimes you are down.
Life is a song that is to be sung.
Life is a gift to that is to be treasured.
Life is a journey that is to be enjoyed.
Life’s comparisons and metaphors abound. In any experience and in anything, life’s lessons are found.
I would like to share some lessons of life that I’ve found – I call them the six strings of life. These six strings of life are life’s lessons from what I call “The Allegory of the Guitar.”
“Once upon a time, after making a fine guitar, the guitar maker told six things to the guitar:
1. You have six uniquely sounding strings;
2. You are meant to be played;
3. You are meant to be played with a song and with other instruments;
4. You are delicate;
5. You can be tuned and re-tuned; and
6. You are as good as how you are played.
After the guitar maker told these things to the guitar, the guitar went on his journey in the hands of excellent guitarists as it treasured the six strings of its being.”
We go through these six strings of life from “The Allegory of the Guitar” as we learn the lessons attached.
First, it has six strings; each sounds uniquely. Each string, yet sounding differently compared to the others, is tuned that way for a purpose. They are tuned the way they are so that when you press on a chord, they will sound in unison as each contributes to the creation of a harmonious sound.
Like each of the strings, we are unique. Each and every one of us is unique. Each of us has his/her own identity. Whatever ethnicity we belong, whatever family we belong, whatever appearance we show the world, whatever our possessions and positions are – that is our identity, that is where we stand, and that is where we start.
Each of us is born into this world, not for senseless things, but to accomplish things. We are made for a purpose. We are the way we are for a reason. So smile and be the way you are.
Second, it is meant to be played. For it to be called a guitar, it must be played.
Imagine a fine guitar just hanging on the corner – through the years it will gather dust on itself. It is seen to be a trash – a useless instrument.
Play it. As a song is to be sung, so is life to be lived.
Third, it is to be played in harmony with a song and with other instruments. Listen to that soothing music when it is played with a family of instruments and to that inspiring melody when a song is sang along with it.
Like the guitar, we are meant to be in harmonious relationship with others. We are meant to associate ourselves with others. We are meant to belong into this world. We are social beings and when we share our life with others, what a wonderful journey on earth we can have as we go along.
Fourth, it is delicate. Force struck upon a guitar may destroy its body. Too much cold or heat can make the strings loosen, can make the sound go off tune, and can get the guitar warp itself. A simple drop of the guitar on the floor may break its whole.
We are living a life that is delicate. As psychology teaches, we are shaped by our environment.
So be on guard.
We live in this world that is full of disturbing, horrifying, and terrifying life canyons that may lead us into darkness; that may get us behind bars; and that may totally break us.
Careful not be drowned into a life filled with oceanic remorseful waves.
Fifth, it can be tuned and retuned. Through numerous guitar sessions, the strings may go out of tune.
However, as long as the guitar is not broken, you can always retune. And lo, you can play it again with your song.
Through the days of our life, we may commit mistakes as we go along but we are not meant to stay in that canal where we have fallen.
Let us learn our lesson, stand up, and go on.
Sixth, it is as good as how it is played.
No matter how great the making of a guitar is, its greatness still depends on how it is played. While we are given a good life, a good gift from Above, our life still depends on how we live it.
As the saying goes, “Life is what you make it.”
Harmony, melody, music is well created when instruments are well played. It doesn’t mean you need to be an expert to do those strumming with sizzles and complicated chords. It is in playing the basics, combined with the songs of your heart, that is sang with feelings of love.
As we go along this journey of life, we recall these six strings of life as we recall the six characteristics of the guitar.
1. Has six uniquely sounding strings;
2. Is meant to be played;
3. Is meant to be played with a song and with other instruments;
4. Is delicate;
5. Can be tuned and retuned; and
6. Is as good as how it is played.
These pertain to the guitar and it also pertains to the way we live life.
You are unique. You have your own purpose.
Live your life.
Share it with the people around.
Be careful. Guard your life.
If you need to change, go ahead change your life — because life is as good as how we live it.
So live your life.
Play it right.