Musings on Moonbin’s death: Why do we cry over artists who are unaware of our existence?
Why do we cry over artists who are not even aware of our existence?
I am writing this hours after learning of Moonbin’s death. This is my way of grieving. This is an attempt to understand emotions that may never be understood.
Nights like this make me reflect about the relationship we have with idols. Why do we cry over people who don’t even know we existed?
It’s so easy to dismiss our love for K-pop as something superficial. It’s easy to laugh at the idea of spending money for people who honestly do not know we exist — let alone our names. I do laugh at myself, too, when I find myself abroad for a concert. Honestly, sometimes, it’s ridiculous.
It’s human nature to seek comfort. It’s human nature to desire for understanding — and for some, emotions are difficult to understand that we turn to music, literature, and art.
In the process, we find comfort.
In a world that’s too loud and cluttered, we value that comfort. In a world where merely surviving becomes a chore, we cherish the little things that make us want to stay alive.
And so when a person — through music, writing, or art — comes into your life at the right place and at the right time, does it matter if they know you? When a person helps you understand the feelings that you yourself cannot make heads or tails of, do oceans and mountains that physically separate you matter?
When there’s a person who helped you get through a dark period in life, is the decision to support them superficial?
It’s no different than going back — time and again — to your favorite movie because you find peace in it. It’s no different than eating that comfort food. We all want peace. We all cherish what gives us that peace.
And so when that peace leaves us behind, a void within us is left, too.
Our love for “idols” isn’t superficial, because it’s a relationship. It’s a friendship made possible by the music that comfort us, the literature that calm us, or art that understands us.
So if you’re hurt over an idol’s enlistment, so be it. If you’re sad over an idol’s death, allow yourself to grieve.
I have been an AROHA for years. Way before I became an ARMY, before I became a MOA, before I became a Carat. Moonbin’s passing is breaking my heart.
In an indescribable way, it’s like losing a friend.
But I always remember what another friend of mine told me before: “Fans are a reflection of the artist they support.”
And so, while I believe there’s no silver lining in Moonbin’s passing, I hope we choose to keep the positive impact he left us. I hope we choose to carry on his smile that brightens up the room and uplifts those around him.
Life does not stop there, life goes on.
There’s some comfort to the idea that you will remain in this world — through your music and dance.
Maybe this is not a goodbye, but rather, a good night.
So, good night, our Dal-kong. Good night, our Binnie. Good night, our Sleepyhead. EDV
Editor’s note: Neil Arwin Mercado is the resident news anchor of INQUIRER.net, and is a self-confessed K-Pop stan.
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