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TUESDAYS WITH MORRIE FREE ONLINE BOOK SUMMARY
The Sixth Tuesday
Mitch arrives at Morrie’s once again with his usual food supply. Morrie’s wife, Charlotte, answers the door for the first time and she tells Mitch that Morrie is not doing so well this particular day. She also tells him that Morrie has not eaten any of the food that Mitch has been bringing because he can no longer eat solid foods.
As Mitch and Morrie start talking, Morrie talks of “detaching” (103) himself. He says that if one is too afraid of an experience a certain emotion, they he or she will never be able to detach themselves. The two discuss other emotions and the fears that come along with them inhibiting people to let go of the fear and to experience the emotion.
Morrie tells Mitch that he does not want to die in a state of fright and that he would rather die peacefully.
Morrie becomes noticeably sicker in this chapter and we can see that Mitch is scared of his death. Morrie’s main topic in this chapter is emotions, learning not to fear them and how to detach oneself.
Morrie feels that in order to be able to let go of an experience or an emotion you must let the experience “penetrate you fully” (103). He further explains that if we hold back on emotions and don’t allow ourselves to proceed through them, we will never be successful at detaching ourselves. He thinks that by throwing ourselves into these emotions, and allowing ourselves to fully experience them, then we will know exactly what they are. He feels that once we are able to recognize these emotions we will have the power to detach ourselves from them. This way we are able to see exactly what the emotion is and have the power not to let it control us.
The Professor Part II
After Morrie received his PhD, he spent time working at a mental hospital near Washington, DC. Morrie ended up working at the hospital for five years and even befriended some of the patients.
Following his work at the hospital he went to Brandeis to teach. He taught classes on social psychology, mental illness and health; he focused more on personal development than career skills.
Albom is allowing us in to more of Morrie’s background. Before he worked as a professor he was given a grant to observe mental patients and record their treatments. He even became friends with some of the patients. Through his work at the mental hospital, he saw that most of the patients had experienced so much rejection and lack of compassion in their lives, that they were left feeling like they didn’t exist. Since many of the patience came from wealthy backgrounds Morrie learned that this wealth did not buy them happiness; Morrie never forgot this lesson or the importance of compassion.
The Seventh Tuesday
This Tuesday Morrie and Mitch discuss the fear of ageing. Morrie has finally surrendered to his illness: he can no longer go to the bathroom by himself. Instead of being frustrated he is enjoying all the people around him who are helping him and taking care of him.
Morrie describes why he thinks it is beneficial to age: to learn more, gain a better understanding of your life and to experience growth.
Throughout the book thus far, Morrie would joke that one day he would need someone to wipe him after he was finished in the bathroom. We see such an impact of his sickness since he can no longer go to the bathroom alone, wash himself, or blow his nose. Morrie says he is enjoying being taken care of so much, just as a baby does. Morrie states that when we are babies we can never get enough of our mothers holding us and rocking us; Morrie then states, “Most of us didn’t get enough. I know I didn’t” (116). As he states this we are reminded of the conversation in which he is telling Ted Koppel about that his mother died when he was very young. Because of this Mitch finally sees why Morrie enjoys human touch to the extent that he does. Morrie feels that he, himself, did not receive enough, due to the early death of his mother, so he seemed to live his life giving out as much as he could to those around him.
Morrie was never particularly scared to age. Being a teacher he sees much of the misery and confusion in young people; he thinks that it can be quite rough being young. He also feels that the young are not yet very wise; they do not yet understand life and its directions, and are still negatively influenced by the media.
Morrie feels that with age comes growth and knowledge. He sees ageing as a growth and the ability to live a better life. He feels that people who wish they were young, lead unfulfilled lives. He states, “...If you’ve found meaning in your life, you don’t want to go back” (118).
In this chapter, Morrie again emphasizes his theory that once we understand we are going to die, we will lead a better and more fulfilling life.