Tuesday, January 12, 2010
What's So Funny About Peace, Love, And Understanding
I pray. A lot. I'm like the character in Steel Magnolia's who "prays because the elastic in her panties is shot." I pray about big things, little things, begging prayers, thankful prayers, forgive me prayers, forgive them prayers, help me forgive them and not want to shoot them prayers, the works. But the hardest prayer in some ways is the one I see engraved on plaques, stitched on samplers, a prayer that seems to be pretty simple, but isn't. The St. Francis prayer. You know the one, the one about seeking to console instead of being consoled, about doing for others those things you want for yourself. When I'm being honest with myself (once a month, every third Wednesday), I know that this is more than a nicety that you can give out on a bookmark. I know this is the most important thing we can do, no matter what, if any, religion we follow.
I, like everyone else, get into the occasional fight or tiff with people I love. No surprise there. I used to think this was the end of the world, as phobic about confrontation as if someone had stuck a rattlesnake around my neck. But it isn't. Even so, very few of us like to fight with those we love. It's so hard, though, because we become so very entrenched in our positions that we lose any hope of bridging the gap of understanding. Usually when someone is upset, the default reaction is to become defensive or attempt to minimize the problem. This makes the upset person become more strident in an attempt to convey the seriousness of the problem which makes the listener become more defensive. And so on. If both people can come together a bit, a lot of the cycle would be broken. I don't really know why I wrote this today; my guess is that someone out in the world needs to hear it. Or like Anne Lammott wrote in an essay once, that she writes things she would like to hear. So I think about the St. Francis prayer, that sweet saint of animals. It's simple, but not easy. To do for others what we so desperately desire for ourselves is perhaps the ultimate prayer.
Michelle's Spell of the Day
"I'll put you through hell, but at the end of it all we'll be champions." Bear Bryant
Has anyone seen Synecdoche, New York? My friend Priscilla says that there will be a giant sucking sound that is your life going bye-bye for those long two hours of the movie. But I've also heard some good things about it so I ask you, dear readers, to give a recommendation if you've seen it.
Benedictions and Maledictions