Friday, July 28, 2017

Our Lives Form Who We Are

In the end, just three things matter; how well we have lived, how well we have loved, and how well we have learned to let go.
-Jack Kornfield
At some point we were born into this life.  My being came into this existence in 1951.  That was a long time ago and I can assure you it was a very different time than we live in now.  My childhood was relatively calm and life seemed good.  It was a simple time for me.  This was not true for everyone but it was for me.  For me, and many of my generation, life changed dramatically when President Kennedy was assassinated in 1963 at the young age of 46.  It seemed like the beginning of the turbulent sixties when our culture went through significant changes.  This was the time of the civil rights movement, the women’s movement, the counter culture movement, the Vietnam war, and the Catholic Church’s Vatican II Council which changed traditions that had been in place for generations.  My generation came of age with all of this as a backdrop.  It was a turbulent and exciting time to grow up.  In the 70’s I got married, in the 80’s and 90’s I raised children, and in 2001, the year of the World Trade Center attack, I turned 50 years old.  As much as I strive to be in the current moment, I sometimes look back at the events and experiences of my life and I wonder how they have formed me and what kind of person I am as a result of these experiences.  How well did I live?  How much have I loved?  What have I let go?  Overall, I think I have done well.  I have had a better than average share of life blessings coupled with a fair share of life’s troubles.  I have survived every challenge so far and I think I am a better and stronger person because of it.  Not everything has gone the way I wanted it to but I have no bitterness.  I have let go of resentments and times when life beat me up.  I once read that our memories are the pillow on which we will sit in our old age.  My pillow is quite comfortable as most of my memories bring a smile to my face or laughter to my heart.  What about you?      

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