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Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Into the Wild

I have been meaning to blog about this movie for a few days and have never found the time. I had read about it on a few websites, and it has been an inspiration to someone I know. So much so in fact he began a cross country journey of his own. I had to see it!!

If you haven't seen the movie, I highly recommend it. It taps into the core of the human spirit and is a true story about a man who fed his wanderlust to the ultimate extreme. A young man whose ideals and visions for the human race were full of compassion, hospitality and solidarity...in addition to solitude. He had very little use for money, success or recognition. He believed that careers were a '20th century inventions' and that "The core of mans' spirit comes from new experiences". If you haven't seen the movie stop reading here because I might spoil it for you.

This man set off on a journey with no map, no money, no intended course....just the journey of life. To me that alone is an inspiration. Before I had a family I often dreamed of just hopping in my car and just going...drive to wherever end up anywhere. To sleep under a different sky every day until I had satisfied my lust for going. Obviously this little fantasy didn't figure in $4 gas prices LOL! Or how I would fund my journey even in the best of economies. But Chris didn't need money. He traveled by thumb and wisdom. Shed his former identity and named himself Alexander Supertramp. I find this idea not only just completely kick ass, but refreshing as well. Haven't we all wanted to be someone else, just for a while?

His travels eventually inspire him to take on the ultimate human challenge. Surviving Alaska, alone, in the wild with very little equipment to do so. In the end he didn't survive, but perhaps that was his destiny. Not a failure on the part of a fool, as some see it, but the destination of a modern day prophet. The final chapter in the inspiring story of Christopher McCandless.

Just like anything I find interest in, I have obsessively researched this story ever since I saw the last frame of the movie. In fact, I finished the movie at 11 p.m and found myself out here on the computer Googling until 12:30 a.m. The more I read the more my inspiration was dashed and clouded with anger at those who, I feel, misunderstood him. So many chalking this inspiring story up to nothing more than the psychotic downfall of an untreated schizophrenic. This led me to ponder these thoughts.

What if that theory is true? Schizophrenia. Does it diminish the inspiration? Does it change the face of Alexander Supertramp? Does it change this story from an epic journey of self discovery to one of insane wandering with a tragic ending? Not for me. Who is to say why one person's reality is not valid? My mother's illness taught me this one truth...it was real to her.

McCandless was and continues to be such an inspiration to people across the globe. I refuse to let the theory that he was simply insane take away from his genius theories about human life and love, or his spirit of adventure. Did Picasso's illness change his works of art to blobs on a canvas? Did Syd Barrett's journey to madness diminish his mark on the history of rock music? Does John Nash's insanity belittle his prestige as a Nobel Prize Winner?

No.

Regardless of the reason, Alexander Supertramp will forever be one of those people I hold in my soul as an inspiration and an example of how a human life should be lived.

"If we admit that human life can be ruled by reason, then all possibility of life is destroyed."— Chris McCandless

4 comments:

Emma in Canada said...

I have yet to see this movie, but it is on my must see list.

Thanks for your comment on my blog!

Liz said...

I'm adding it to my Netflix list...

BoufMom9 said...

I had heard about this movie on another blog and just thought it was fascinating when i sat down to watch it too!
Glad you enjoyed it too!
Great blog post!!
:) Debi
ps You are right, I am a Redneck! LOL Right down to the car parked on the lawn that doesn't start. haha

Mum-me said...

Sounds like a good movie. I'll have to see if I can get it.

I have finally got around to playing 'tag'. Sorry it took so long. I am not a very fast runner ;0)