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Autumn and a walk in the cemetary

Autumn is undoubtedly my favourite season of all. The trees are ablaze with the colours of the fall. The fields, the streets, the parks are all covered with a layer of golden leaves. It’s as if the trees were exhausted from a productive summer, producing flowers and bearing fruits.

Many a times, autumn has been associated with melancholy and sadness. Maybe because it’s the prelude to winter, a season of death and barrenness.

Incidentally, my friends and I were at Zentralfriedhof, Europe’s second largest cemetary (according to Wikipedia, this piece of burial ground is half the size of Zurich!). It’s the place where many prominent and famous Austrians were laid to rest.

I would expect it to be glum but instead it was just the opposite. I saw people strolling as if they were in a park. I see people taking pictures. In fact, my Hindu friend asked me whether it’s ok to pose in front of graveyards smiling?

Why not? Nature too seems to be celebrating, with those vibrant colours.

Autumn is beautiful. But autumn is also the prelude to winter. In a few days the rains and the wind will come and the leaves will fall and die. The leaves were going out in a blaze of glory.

So why the celebration? Why the joyous colours in the face of death? Nothing here of the sombre black and white that we normally associate with death. Instead creation goes into death with brilliant colours, with shouts of joy and celebration. Cheeky even. Why?

Perhaps creation knows there is a spring ahead, after winter, that there is life after death, that indeed the path to life lies through death. Here the book of creation helps illustrate the book of Scripture. When the Creator came to us He told us:
“I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat is planted in the soil and dies, it remains alone. But its death will produce many new kernels—a plentiful harvest of new lives.
(John 12: 23b-26 NLTse)” (Showing the colours, Rev Soo-Inn).

For us Christians, death is not the end. “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies, and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.” (John 11:25-26a). We can celebrate in the face of death, coz Jesus himself overcame death.

So smile on and keep the cameras clicking! I hope I brought the message clearly across to my friend.

I felt really honored to be able to pay homage to such famous music composers!!


Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 – 1791). Composer (grave is not in Zentralfriedhof, but in St. Marx.)


Ludwig van Beethoven (1770 – 1827). Composer


Franz Schubert (1797 – 1828). Composer


Johann Strauss I (1804 – 1828). Composer
I couldn’t find Johann Strauss II =((


Arnold Schoenberg (1874 – 1951). Modern Composer

5 comment(s) to this post


This must be one of your best posts so far. I like how you describe the nature of autumn and drawing fantastic analogies of it with the Creator.

I hope I could one day be there standing among the graves of Mozart, Beethoven, Strauss and the rest. It’ll be such a fitting homage and emotional experience to tread the paths of these great composers of Europe’s golden age of music. By the way, shouldn’t Schoenberg’s stone have twelve sides, instead of eight-sided cube? :-) Schoenberg is one of the founding fathers of twelve-tone Serialism.

#1johnsee  ::  22 October 2007, 17:10  ::  #

i like this metaphore….. And I notice that you english is at sky high level. The whole passage is nicely written. Having cold breeze sweeping gently across your face as you walk in the graveyard should be very nice and rejuvenating… Study hard, Ji…. and enjoy your stay there.

#2lianghoong  ::  23 October 2007, 01:02  ::  #

john: if u look carefully, it’s 2 cubes stacked together… 1 cube has 6 sides, so 2 cubes makes 12 sides!! Symbolism is still there i think =p. Don’t worry, next time when u’re here, will definitely bring u to Zentralfriedhof, since it is a must-see place, along with other places that are related to great composers. Will organize a special pilgrimage tour specially for a music geek like u =p.

hoong: thanks for the encouragement =) Actually the analogy is not original, I took the idea from Rev Soo-Inn’s article – Showing the Colours, and added in my own pictures =p. U study hard too ya….see u online!

#3meisin  ::  23 October 2007, 11:51  ::  #

you asked why its krystyn. so i shall tell you why =)

reason no. 1: BECAUSE I LIKE IT
reason no. 2: BECAUSE I LIKE IT
reason no. 3: BECAUSE I LIKE IT

conclusion? (you guessed it already)
BECAUSE I LIKE IT

and yes, you may spank me if you want to. but the problem is, YOU CANT!!! bwahahah…

#4krystyn  ::  25 October 2007, 20:26  ::  #

Wei Krystyn, check out some possible permutations of your name:
Kristin, Christyne, Kristy, Christin, Khristine, Keris-tin, Kwistin…..

Hehhehhehe…no lah, i don’t spank people wan, instead I….muahahhaha. U’ll find out once i am back! =p

#5meisin  ::  30 October 2007, 01:06  ::  #

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to be posted on 13 December 2018, 05:29

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