Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Meditation on Life

I've been brooding for a while now. Even with so many blessings in my life, there's been, to say the least, a lot of challenges. I've been looking at my past thinking about what went wrong and realizing that in fact it's a defeatist attitude. Maybe instead of being so harsh with myself and my mistakes, instead of looking at all the defeats I have suffered, suffering, and will suffer I can look at my life as a work in progress, that the meaning I find will change and grow as the years pass.

This prayer really touched me (apparently it is said at Jewish funerals, but I only encountered now) - I think just a few short years ago I would find it corny, not it resonates more than ever.

Birth is a beginning

Birth is a beginning, and death a destination;
But life is a journey, a going - a growing from stage to stage.

From childhood to maturity and youth to age.
From innocence to awareness and ignorance to knowing;
From foolishness to discretion and then perhaps to wisdom.

From weakness to strength or strength to weakness
- and often, back again.
From health to sickness and back, we pray to health again.

From offense to forgiveness, from loneliness to love,
From joy to gratitude, from pain to compassion,
And grief to understanding - from fear to faith.

From defeat to defeat to defeat - until, looking backward or ahead,
We see that victory lies not at some high place along the way,
But in having made the journey,
Stage by stage - a sacred pilgrimage.

Birth is a beginning, and death a destination;
But life is a journey, a sacred pilgrimage
Made stage by stage - from birth to death to life everlasting.

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