This blog entry is my further and long response to Dianita and to others who gave their sincere comments in response to the earlier blog At a Serious Crossroads. You have furthered my thinking. By the way, also please read the sequel entitled Progress with the Book which was written before this entry and before Dianita's comment.
Here is what Dianita wrote:
So it's my fault that I planted the seed [for writing about your past]! And you are soul-searching now. I think back when I suggested you write your story because I kept feeling that you were trying to understand yourself, human self and would reflect on the past, and I thought if she could just write down the pieces of her puzzle she might see the whole picture and find peace with her humanity.
You were struggling to understand personality traits and you needed to understand how your conditioning created your personality. Now it seems you are at a point that you get it, and are getting ready to really dump the past. We can't just dump it until we are ready. Like cleaning out your house and your two other apartments, you hung on to things until you just didn't need them any more.
But you did have to sort through it all until you were satisfied. You can do what you are guided with your history and then move on. It is the journey after all and you have researched the relative and found it to be wanting, so plunge fully into your divinity, why waste another second on the past? However if it's fun for you keep going do so until there is no need or joy in it. Love, Dianita
Hi, Dianita! So happy to have you back here and for all that you stimulate. How happy I would be to meet you again at the Thai Deli. You could tell me anything, and I would love you for it.
I love your expression: "Find peace with your humanity." That's powerful, Dianita. Maybe that's what we're all doing one way or another. And that may be the same as, what God is always telling us:
Let go of the past, step out of it.
So, who can argue?
Except I can! Sometimes I seem to take the "other side" whatever it is!
If I hadn't written the family stories, I might be bemoaning that I hadn't.
Yet all I have to hear is that writing them down has a purpose like sitting on Freud's couch, and then when it's finished, I can get up and the stories have done their job and I am done with them -- I just don't believe it.
On the other hand, if you told me that psycho-analysis doesn't work, I might be defending it.
Nothing is quite so clear-cut for me.
You wrote to me, dear friend:
"You were struggling to understand personality traits and you needed to understand how your conditioning created your personality."
This is interesting. I can see some of this as motivation and result, yet not all by a longshot, not that one has to see all. Or maybe we see what we look for.
I can see how my love of story and language came from my mother. I can see the delight my father gave to me and see how I yearn for his tenderness from others now. I can look back and see love given to me and love not given to me. I can wonder at the beauty given to me, and I can wonder at the unkindness also given to me from certain quarters and my sense of lostness. Indeed, I learned something about myself from these stories.
And that is not to say that we don't grow a lot as we go along without delving.
Of course, it's better to be unattached.
On the human level, I don't know that the effects of the past are ever over. I don't like the idea of dumping the past as though it were worthless. I don't like the idea of dismissing it. I can like the idea of growing beyond the past. I love the idea of "finding peace with my humanity." Still, I'm not sure that the effects of the past are ever done with.
On the plus side of writing about the past, in the story about my beloved brother Sid, for instance, and the reversal of a sweet relationship, I saw clearly how I contributed to the downfall. If I had not written that story, I might not have gained the insights I did gain of a pattern in me that I must, absolutely must, let go of. Yet this awareness has not broken the pattern. Not yet, anyway.
From the writing of my family stories I certainly can see reasons for my insecurities and traits I wish I didn't have. Try as I may, I cannot account for how it is that God came to me and gave me the gift of Godwriting™.
Since then, God has given me the best thirteen years of my life, and more is to come. More is to come for all of us. The best is yet to come.
The only real explanation I have for the shift in my life is that God can do anything. God performs miracles, and He gave me a miracle.
What in my life pointed to this? I don't see it.
Well, of course, there is, too, the idea of destiny.
In any case, I am so glad. I am also glad for my mother and father that this happened to their daughter. May it be their reward too.