A busy weekend and a happily quiet day ahead. Dinner with two friends last night. Conversation ranged from global warming, the NRA, flight 777, our children’s relationships to aging and hope. This from Doris: there is a moral imperative to cultivate and maintain hope — no matter what. This has me thinking. Especially as it was uttered by someone who has never shied away from the ugly truths (eg. She represented one of the Guantanamo detainees pro bono and one year attended an interfaith ceremony of healing at one of the death camps in Europe). The morality of hope. The imperative of hope.
In the meantime, apologies for first reblogging this from an old blog. Decided to cancel out and redo. Here are some pix of morning light from last week.
the new day always brings hope
yes it does. As does spring. I keep thinking about the sticks that you and your husband planted. Ritual can be a place marker for hope.
I first did the New & Old Stick ritual 10 years ago as part of an online course called an Act Of Power with Lynn Andrews moderated by a gentle magic woman named Margaret Hart Lewis who looked after us all beautifully as we explored what we really wanted to dream into being in this lifetime. Lynn calls it the Life & Death Prayer Arrows and it can be done at any time of the year, the original course was timed for the Spring Equinox in the US but living in Australia means we do everything with a quite bipolar sensibility, for instance our Summer Solstice is combined with the Winter Solstice/Christmas celebrations replete wth reindeers, fake snow, men warmly dressed as Santa in the shopping centres, roast dinners mulled wine and plum puddings in the middle of summer! We all go to the beach and swim off the excess the next day on Boxing Day !
I never thought of hope as a moral imperative, but it is essential, so that razor sharp way of putting it does hold truth. Without being able to imagine a different way of being change will never happen, so the hopeful image of what we want and need in the future must be formulated and held. Cynicism and despair guarantee that what we fear will rule the day. That said, it isn’t possible (at least for me) to always have the strength to hope in the face of all that troubles the world. After every disaster and betrayal I have to bring myself out of the sorrow and futility I feel back to hope. I do this because life would become unlivable if I didn’t, but I fully understand the difficulty. “Moral imperative” has judgmental overtones that trouble me, even as I agree that hope must prevail. Thanks for the chance to think out loud about this. It sounds like you and your friends have conversations that matter.
Thank you for that direction, Mo!
Dana, I think the reason the term ‘moral imperative’ doesn’t have judgmental overtones for me is because it is corrective of a former view… I used to think that our obligations as human beings included being kind and seeing things exactly as they are. Truth trumping hope, in short. It’s not that Hope-as-Mandate requires dispensing with the truth, but it does suggest that Something Else beyond recognizing the awful things in our world is necessary. I am somewhat thinking aloud here and don’t know how to do what I am talking about… For that reason, I particularly appreciate you long and thoughtful reply.