How To Accept Our “Mistakes”

August 20, 2010 by  
Filed under Blog

I am someone who is really tough on myself.  Somehow somewhere I have bought into a notion that I have to be “perfect”.  I know that is not only an impossibility but not a fair request because what I am after does not exist.

I have used quotation marks on the word perfect because there isn’t just one kind of perfect.  Each one of us has a “perfect” for what the right answers or outcomes would be for each situation.  The result being that in each relationship or experience we have to negotiate our kind of “perfects”.

Read more

Share

Facing Off With Fear…

May 27, 2009 by  
Filed under Uncategorized

I recently saw a movie called “Veronica Guerin”, based on the life of an Irish journalist whose investigations of narcotics trafficking in her native Dublin led her on a mission to expose the devastating consequences of this activity on local communities. In doing this work she awakened the larger community to the impact of drug infestation upon the lives of families in the afflicted neighborhoods. As depicted in this film, it was her role as a mother of a young son that imbued her with an inescapable and fateful sense of empathy for the young families around her. The sense of interconnection this generated in her created a moral imperative to face down the criminals forces, and oppose the poisonous streams they had unleashed in these neighborhoods. By relentlessly working to raise the public’s awareness of these problems she was able to galvanize the community into action. Though she lost her life in the course of this fight, it was her work that ultimately cleansed these communities of the monsters residing in their midst.

The most remarkable aspect of her character was an indefatigable willingness to embrace her community with an urgency and sense of responsibility that is commonly reserved for one’s immediate family. In essence, she extended her perception of family – of those who reside within the circle of familial love – to encompass the community as a whole. This was a heroic expression of love, engendered by an equally uncommon degree of fearlessness. She did indeed experience great fear, having been shot, assaulted, and having the life of her child threatened in the vilest terms. Nevertheless she continued to pursue her work with an undaunted sense of mission, struggling at the same time to convey to her uncomprehending family that for her this was not a matter of choice, but of absolute necessity.

Her path of action was a manifestation of the hard, uncompromising face of love. It was an expression of love as an encompassing and inclusive ethic that radicals like Gandhi have espoused. It was a rare and powerful expression of one whose love is so great that it transforms the lives and circumstances of those who fall within its sphere of influence.

Her story illuminates the inter-relatedness of love and fear in the starkest terms. It unfolds amidst circumstances in which things of the greatest value were at stake and in danger of being destroyed. It concerns family in both the conventional sense and also in a wider sense that encompasses all of the human family.

Admittedly the ethos of Veronica Guerin sets the bar beyond the reach of the ordinary man. It is a story that examines the possibility of considering the bonds one shares with others in a different light. This is an aspirational theme: the expansion of one’s field of consideration and caring to include others with which one does not have an immediate, personal connection – besides sharing the same patch of ground.

This story also portrays the mystery that binds love and courage as though they share the same coin. Perhaps it is as Winston Churchill has said – that courage is the greatest of all the virtues for it is the guarantor of all the others. Fearlessness, courage allows its great accompaniment of love to take action, to come in to life.

Share