Sunday, January 30, 2011

司徒華 and Lu Xin’s (魯迅) Iron House

A man wakes up.  He finds himself in a house, with walls made of iron.  There are no windows or doors.  In other words, there is no way to escape.  He also finds that there are other people sleeping in the house.  If they do not get out of the house, they will soon suffocate and die.  But it is impossible to break out of the iron-clad house.  Should he wake up the others?   On the one hand, it seems impossible to break down the iron walls.  Wouldn’t it be cruel to wake up the others, to alert them to the impending doom?  Wouldn’t it be better to let them die in their sleep?  On the other hand, if he realizes there is an impending doom and do not alert the others, wouldn’t he be implicated in their death?  Perhaps he/they should try to breakdown the walls, however impossibly strong they may appear?

This was actually a story told by my favourite author, Lu Xin (魯迅), in 《呐喊》自序.  The efforts of Szeto Wah and the others, to bring justice and democracy to Hong Kong and China, remind me of Lu Xin’s story of the iron house.  Both are great men that I respect very much.  Both, obviously, believe in trying, even though the task seems impossible.

With God, everything is possible.  I have to believe that.  Otherwise, there is no hope in life. 


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