5 things I learnt from Andy Dufresne


This guy, Andy Dufresne influenced my life. For the first few weeks after I saw the movie, The Shawdhank Redemption, I would parade around my college halls with an ever present smile. Afterall, if he can smile through everything he lost, so can I. Gradually the hopeful aura of the movie wore off, until I saw it again! And again! I think I have seen this prison break story, uho spoiler alert, 5 times since then, no mean feat since it is quite depressing but yet so enchanting. And it taught me the greatest lesson of life, the magic of holding onto hope. About how hope will make you go crazy but also will win over all your fears. About how hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies, right? I mean if he can dig his way to freedom, I say to myself, cant we do the same to our troubles? Well, of course we can!

I am always talking about change, and I am always hearing people talk about change too. How people have changed, how life has changed, the momentum of things, the dynamics of it all.
Remember Brooks, the prisoner who was set free after 49 years? He fell in routine with his imprisonment so much so that he escaped his freedom by committing suicide. Why? Change. Change scares us all, it scares me. I do everything in my power to resist it. But as Brooks said ‘ the world went and got itself in a big damn hurry’ and if we dont keep pace, we are bound to get lost because the world is always in a hurry and hustle we must.

The third best thing that the movies taught me was that there is always a place for you in this world. Hey, if a murder convict can find work for himself in a prison, so can anybody, right? And it did him good too. It kept him safe from the Sisters and in good books of the gaurds and Warden. At the end it may have just saved him! So always, always fight for your place and never give up. Your life can turn out to be a lot better if you hold its reigns.

I have always believed that life works in full circles. And this journey of Andy Dufresne reinforces that belief. It says,  you shall always have closure. What are the chances, otherwise, of Andy meeting Tommy, the guy who might have met the actual murderer of Andy’s wife? Can’t we just suppose that it was this karmic fate along with the denial of justice that spurred him to fight for his freedom? Have courage, have faith and things will work out for the best! This keeps me going on most days.

Lastly the man, Red, Mr Ellis Boyd Redding, the only guilty man in Shawshank, or so he claimed. Oh, what a friend! If you have even a single person in your life who can even come close to being what Red was to Andy, you are done for life. And believe me you are! Because where would Andy be without Red? And what are we without the people who love us?

If you watch the movie carefully, it is just a simple journey, a journey all of us go through in life, metaphorically of course. We are all prisoners of our beliefs, our habits and of our minds and breaking free is our purpose.


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