Sunday, 18 November 2012

a time to speak, a time to give up, a time to plant and a time to laugh

American 20th-century novelist Thomas Wolfe wrote about the old testament book of Ecclesiastes: "Of all I have ever seen or learned, that book seems to me the noblest, the wisest, and the most powerful expression of man’s life upon this earth — and also the highest flower of poetry, eloquence, and truth. I am not given to dogmatic judgements in the matter of literary creation, but if I had to make one I could say that Ecclesiastes is the greatest single piece of writing I have ever known, and the wisdom expressed in it the most lasting and profound.".

There is a passage in this wisdom book which will be familiar to many, about there being a time for everything.  I find this to be an encouraging statement about the ebb and flow in life, the changing seasons and the sense that it's all part of a bigger plan:

There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens:

    a time to be born and a time to die,
    a time to plant and a time to uproot,
    a time to kill and a time to heal,
    a time to tear down and a time to build,
    a time to weep and a time to laugh,
    a time to mourn and a time to dance,
    a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
    a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
    a time to search and a time to give up,
    a time to keep and a time to throw away,
    a time to tear and a time to mend,
    a time to be silent and a time to speak,
    a time to love and a time to hate,
    a time for war and a time for peace.

And so in the last couple of weeks, for me, it has been a time to speak, a time to uproot, a time to give up, a time to search, a time to plant and above all a time to laugh.

As Leonard Cohen sings in Anthem "There is a crack in everything that's how the light gets in".




No comments:

Post a Comment