“But when you forgive, you love, And when you love, God’s light shines through you”.
Mr. Franz (played by Hal Holbrook) said this to Christopher/Alexander (played by Emile Hirsch) in Sean Penn’s adaptation of Jon Krakauer’s book Into the Wild, about a young man who gives up his possessions, burns his identification and money, in a quest to live off the land and find truth, his truth, our truth, truth. I read the book when it first came out and recently borrowed the film from my local library, and I am so glad I finally saw it.
In my opinion, Christopher/Alexander’s relationship with his parents and discovering that they are flawed human beings (like us all) is the impetus that drives him to his journey. Along the way, he meets special people (either through hitchhiking and/or needing work) that help him, learn from him, and teach him. This film made me cry and reminded me that there are good people in this world. Into the Wild also reminded me of something that one of my favorite yoga teachers says (I forget if it is through a quote or one of his original quotes): We are all here to help each other.
Although the ending is sad and heartbreaking, there is such beauty in it because he was ready to go home. He manages to send this message when he writes the following message into a book he was reading: “Happiness only real when shared.”
(photo courtesy of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Into_the_Wild)