Begin with the end in mind

The beginnings of endings are the most poignant reminders that we are alive: the knife edge between Summer and Fall; the first intimation of impending mortality in one's parents; the concluding acts of plays or operas, the final movements of symphonies or stanzas of great songs; the moment when one realize a love is about to be lost -- these moments are full of life at its most keen, as the cycle reveals itself to be both terrible and comforting, regenerative and final.

Remember that you go on and do not go on. Catastrophes are the terrible end for many -- that end we can all too plainly see. But it is just as true that those catastrophes form new beginnings that are impossible for all but a few to detect.

So as you pray for those whose lives, as they know them, have ended, include yourself, and the others who have begun an ending, in your prayers: know that we all have begun to end, and that miraculous new beginnings have taken root.

It is the roots that we should pray for, and water, and nurture: the salt of our tears does not nourish the roots, but our quiet, loving efforts toward recovery and growth, these make all the difference.

--Mr. Gobley


amba said...

A prayer for Rosh Hashanah, among other things. (When is it this year anyway? I never know.)

amba said...

Reminds me of this:

"God is change and Death is his prophet."

- Yehuda Amichai

Mr. Gobley said...

My dear Amba:

My calendar says that Rosh Hashanah starts on the evening of October 3rd. Yom Kippur starts on the evening of October 12; Sukkot on the evening of October 17; and Simchat Torah the evening of October 25.

Wong Online PoKér Hu said...

That is so true. We appreciate life more when everything seems to dissipate or change in our existence.