What did you learn?
Some days things go well, other days things go „so so“, again other days, nothing seems to go anywhere.
There are these condensations, it seems, these unique moments when it matters, exams, competitions, business deals, contests, and we will hear the question: „Did you win?“ or, when it is a student,"Did you get an A?"
When I was in a job competition for a professorship and didn’t come in first place, a deep sense of guidance sustained me beautifully with a quiet feeling of peace and calm. My daughter Zoë with her spiritual sense helped, too, when I left the auditorium. The search committee had picked someone from inside of their circle - I was a new face and had applied from the outside.
It was really this losing which transformed for me once and forever a familiar observation into a timeless guideline: „Sometimes you win and sometimes you… learn.“
So learning we do - on a transformative journey we are; Picking up experiences, little victories and big defeats. And big victories now and then. On this way we learn that we don’t get a healing, we rather claim a healing; that success is within reach when we refrain from being superior to others but rather endeavour to be superior to our old selves (as Ernest Hemingway wrote); that forgiveness is not a contract, but of gift of wideness.
Life’s goal is not in accumulating little victories and avoiding the big defeats, the goal is more humble and bigger at the same time: to support the awakening of a spiritual perspective of everything, in which mercy and modesty are much more important than anything else; in which giving is more important than getting. What is really important? What does really matter? What is there to learn, truly?
In a poem by Fennella Bennetts, based on Paul’s first letter to the Christians in Corinth, learning is mentioned in the last verse:
"Now I would learn to know this Love
Through meek and patient ministry,
Until my life has grown anew
And Love is All-in-all to me."
So the question at the end of each day can move safely from „Did you win?“ to „What did you learn“? And in the very best of moments the answer will be: „I learned Love."
27/6/2015 07:27:49 am
Annette, This was a very beautiful post. It reminds me of a sweet article by Neil MIllar on the CSMonitor Home Forum page years ago, entitled, "On the Wings of Defeat" where he meaningfully posits that there truly is no such thing as failure. I loved your take on this so very important message. Life truly is not to be measured in the human dramas, ups and downs, etc. But only in the powerful spiritual development we experience as that central eternal thread of discovering what Love really is. Thank you for your sharings!
27/6/2015 12:19:05 pm
This reminded me of a similar experience. Thank you for helping me to gain a clearer sense of "winning". "Sometimes you win...and sometimes you learn." Danke :-)
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