I did it. I succumbed to the hype and checked out John Green’s The Fault In Our Stars and I read the whole thing and I here I am, writing a blog post on it because it just really got me thinking.
**If you haven’t read this book, I suggest you read no further as there may be spoilers below.**
We all go about our daily lives, complaining about even the most minute of things such as the wrong amount of sweetener in our coffee or the speed of our Internet or the filter we should’ve used but didn’t on our latest Instagram photo. We as humans are so engrossed in our own silly little problems and so narrow-minded that we often aren’t aware of the rest of the world. I live in America. It’s hard for me to imagine that elsewhere in the world, there are wars happening and children are threatened by bombs every day because all I’ve ever known is the safety of living in a first world country. It’s hard for me to imagine what it’s like to know that you’re going to die from a terminal illness such as thyroid cancer because I’ve always taken for granted the ability to breathe independently of machines and medications.
We’re selfish people who seek attention and want to be “noticed by the universe.” We’re often motivated by our materialistic wants, like Kurtz and his ivory or Gatsby and his riches, all to prove to the universe that we did something great with our lives and that we’ll be remembered long after we’re gone. We’re self-centered and self-pitying, encapsulated by our own troubles and unable to open our minds to all that is happening in the world.
As a healthy teenager living in relative comfort, I’ve come to realize that no matter how bad I have it, there are people out there who have it worse. I have no right to complain. Of course, my life isn’t perfect. Nobody’s is. The world is not a wish-granting factory and there must be pain in order for us to know what joy is.
Well said, John Green. Thanks for helping us realize that we all need to live our best life today. There’s no telling what tomorrow will bring. I’m at a loss for words because there are so many things this novel has opened my eyes to. I would say “My thoughts are stars I can’t fathom into constellations,” but, in fact, they’re nowhere near the many great philosophical musings of Augustus, Hazel, and Peter Van Houten.