And I Shall Find Peace There [Yeats]

The Circle of Life: Searching for Peace on the Continuum


The third week in September, I joined with friends from my childhood to celebrate the 50th birthday anniversary of a dear friend. We kicked up our heels, danced the night away and reminisced about a past forty years in the making. One week later, I attended the memorial service for an in-law, who died after a long illness at age 64. This weekend, I will be attending the memorial service of her niece, who died tragically at the tender age of 22.  At times like these, one is compelled to contemplate the circle of life and one’s place in it. The hub, the wheel, the character Angus Tuck calls it in the book Tuck Everlasting. In his case, he bemoans his condition of immortality after drinking from a spring that bequeathed him and his family with a legacy he would rather let go, yearning for a normal life; yearning to be part of the circle, to live and to die when the time comes. If dying as Angus Tuck puts it, is as important as living, how then does one reconcile the pain, the feelings of dislocation, of having one’s world turned topsy- turvy with the passing of a loved one? How does one measure one’s life and give meaning to one’s days?

One way, I believe is to explore your potential to create, produce and give meaningfully of your talent to those in your circle and to the world around you. I believe that we can strive to be magnificent in all that we do, wherever we are located. In accepting that we are part of the hub of life, we have to respond to the challenge to be creative and explore the abundance of the universe in ways that honor our talents and creativity; those unique gifts bestowed on us. I believe we can reach out beyond ourselves to touch, support and lift up those around us and offer strength in times when there may seem to be little relief from the depths of despair.  We can connect to others in our tribe and share the hopeful message that even within the midst of pain there is beauty in life. As for me, I realize that even in the throes of relentless pain,  I need to summon the strength and the courage to move on to the next step in the journey; listening carefully, intuitively; living my truth; taking each step boldly. For, it is at this  place of awareness and acceptance I shall find peace.  



About Dr. Marvalous!

I am an educator, author, and community/cultural activist of Jamaican heritage, deeply concerned about the way we shape and are shaped by society. How do we engage the resources around us to realize our creative potential? How do we give of ourselves to become the change we want to see in this world? It is my intention to engage an audience in energetic and provocative discussions on these issues.
This entry was posted in Bereavement, Circle of Life, feminine leadership, creativity, Honoring Life's Cycle, Loss & Acceptance, Tuck Everlasting and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to And I Shall Find Peace There [Yeats]

  1. Dr. Ivy Armstrong says:

    I was born into the House of Armstrong – my father hailed from an Episcopalian family, my mother, from an Evangelical one.
    My grand-uncle, Enock Ridgeway was an itinerant (horse- back ) preacher,- my grand-aunt, Ella Ruddock a graduate from Taylor University, spent her life in religious fervor ; no wonder then, that I had a personal encounter with the Lord at a very early age , and committed my life to Him. The Scriptures teach me that I am fearfully and wonderfully made – in my study of anatomy and physiology, I marvel at the structure and function of the human body, I am in awe of the intellectual powers and capabilities of man, I am bewildered by the emotional and psychological profundity of reasoning and logic, more so at the intuition of spiritual connection between man and his Creator . This affirms that eternity is in the soul of man. This marvelous masterpiece is but a temporal structure; Derek Walcott in his brilliant play “Ti Jean and his brothers” writes: ” I am born- I shall die”, further alluding to this literary work, Gran Jean trusted in his physical strength, Mi Jean trusted in his intellectual prowess but Ti jean trusted in his Creator , drew from God’s creative power and developed harmony with nature. Life then, is full of meaning and immortality eventually clothes us, as we shuffle off what Shakespeare ‘this mortal coil’. No more being burdened and inhibited by flesh, time, space, and distance –free.. free… free. The transition is fraught with glory- each step I take just lead me closer home.

    • Rosemarie Gujral says:

      Dr. Armstrong, if Ella Ruddock was your grand-aunt, then we are related. I am the granddaughter of aunt Ella’s nephew the late Rev. Frederick Ruddock. Would love a response.

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