The Limits of Your Longing
This poem encouraged me today:
Go to the Limits of Your Longing
by Rainer Maria Rilke
God speaks to each of us as he makes us,
then walks with us silently out of the night.
These are the words we dimly hear:
You, sent out beyond your recall,
go to the limits of your longing.
Flare up like a flame
and make big shadows I can move in.
Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.
Just keep going. No feeling is final.
Don’t let yourself lose me.
Nearby is the country they call life.
You will know it by its seriousness.
Give me your hand.
The Washington Post
Anxiety is love’s greatest killer. It makes others feel as you might when a drowning man holds on to you. You want to save him, but you know he will strangle you with his panic.
― Anaïs Nin
According to family systems theory, any “system” of which people are part wants to maintain homeostasis. Change is threatening, even change for the better, because it means individual members of the comfortable existing system will also have to change, and change is scary. This explains why, when there is abuse, family members and friends and churches try so hard to push back against the victim’s cry for help–if they help her, the system itself will have to adjust to the new reality, and it will be VERY difficult for the others in that system to make that adjustment.
What was your mother? A lioness! Among lions she crouched; in the midst of young lions she reared her cubs. ~Ezekiel 19:2
When I was in junior high, Helen Reddy’s song, “I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar” was very popular. It played over and over on the radio, and I sang along in my 13-year-old voice. I really didn’t know what it was about, but it was a catchy tune, and I was a “woman,” so I roared. I can still hear the tune in my head as I type the title.
Later, as a loyal anti-feminist and promoter of all things Patriarchy, I remembered singing that song, and I was ashamed. My radar was now up for anything that sounded remotely feminist. I colored inside the lines with my “fiercely submissive” views, and the only two crayons I had were black and white.
That’s changed. (more…)
All good stories have an arc: Laying the groundwork, rising action, climax, falling action, and the resolution (known as dènouement, for you language geeks). Every life also has a unique story arc with these common elements. Themes and motifs may vary, but the trajectory is the same. One theme appears in every life story, however–the theme of death and resurrection. (more…)