For those of who don’t follow British-indie-country-folk-rock music, the band Mumford and Sons recently finished their tour of South Africa. Playing in Cape Town, Durban and Pretoria, the shows were sold out within minutes of the tickets being released last year. To say they are “popular” would be an understatement…

Jamming with local talent. Photo credit: Mumford and Sons

Jamming with local talent. Photo credit: Mumford and Sons

I had the fortune of attending a show this past Saturday and it was one of the best live acts I have seen in a while. Never mind that the band’s live sound is the same as their produced sound (always an indicator of authentic talent), never mind that the band interacted, spoke to and shared a bit of their personal experiences with the crowd. Never mind that they embraced the local artists who opened for them (this is HUGE-most international bands do not seem to care about local talent in a country that they are touring). The real reason I enjoyed their performance is because they are REAL. Their lyrics are heartfelt and reminiscent of a time when songs weren’t predominantly about cars and money.

One song entitled “Awake My Soul” has the very poignant line of “where you invest your love is where you invest your life”. Standing in the amphitheater at the Voortrekker Monument while the rain poured down on 25 000 people, that line made me suddenly think about my life. Sure, it was no more than a second of deep introspection at a rock concert where there were ample distractions, but I realised that the band had a point.

If you invest your love in material things, expensive cars, exotic holiday houses or the latest fashion trends (read: expensive)  then your life will inevitably revolve around nothing more than expensive cars, exotic holiday houses and the latest expensive clothes.

If you invest your love in studying, the pursuit of knowledge and reading then your life will revolve around all things intellectual, seeking further understanding of the world around you and how history and science has shaped the current age that we live in.

If you invest your love in people, friends, family, encompassed as relationships, then your life will revolve around shared experiences, different points of view and the ability to see beyond your self. The universe is not centered on you and a great way to see and accept that is by focusing on others for a change.

I am not championing any one of the life directions mentioned above. You can have any combination of interests or endeavours in life, and indeed, I think that makes life more rewarding. I am not against hoping to own a Ferrari or kick back in the Seychelles, but I can honestly say I don’t invest my love in a direction that will explicitly achieve those outcomes. As I look around at some of the happenings in the world today, including South Africa, I begin to see how some people invest their love in different ways. And I wonder, only after having contemplated it for myself, do they know where they invest their love? Where they have chosen to invest their life?

Do you?