Forever Questions

Using the quotation below as a jumping off point, tell us about an event or experience that helped you define one of your values:

“Some questions cannot be answered. / They become familiar weights in the hand, / Round stones pulled from the pocket, unyielding and cool.”

-Jane Hirshfield

In this life, there are two types of questions: ordinary questions, of mathematics, logistics, and time; and questions of love, questions of faith, questions of life, whose truth is found not in answers, but rather in the journey to find them. Too many people do not realize this, becoming numb to the passionate nature that the journey entails. I have found that the questions we ask ourselves that never change, only the answers and their scope. The truly important questions are kept in our pockets at all times, and from time to time re-assessed and re-answered based on where we are and where we want to go. This constant pursuit drives me and I am pushed on by the questions for which destiny demands answers. Why am I here? Where am I going? Will I leave this world better than I found it? My high school football coach gave me the best advice that I have ever received. He once told me that the most important thing in life is to “enjoy the ride.” As I thought about that advice, I realized how true it really was. This simple statement holds true in regards to life, to love, and to the quest for truth. Far too often people overlook the process that results in success, disregarding the incredible coincidence that culminates in each and every situation. When one places too much in the end result, they are filled with a sense of anticlimactic disappointment. On the contrary, if one places everything in the journey, in the questions, it is impossible to be disappointed, no matter where the path leads. As long as the path leads forward, never ceding to stagnancy or listlessness, the answers are truly irrelevant. Richard Bach once said, “You don’t want a million answers as much as you want a few forever questions. The questions are diamonds you hold in the light. Study a lifetime and you see different colors from the same jewel.” This is, in essence, a fundamental belief by which I try to live my life. Questions are good for the mind, body, and soul. I truly believe that the quest for knowledge reigns superior over the actual facts and figures that are considered answers in today’s world. Questions allow the mind to hope, to yearn, and to strive for more. When one loses his ability to question, he loses his ability to live, to truly be human. If accepted to Princeton University, I would be able to continue this practice of lifelong questioning in the perfect academic and social environment, furthering my education, my dreams, and my hopes for a better future.

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