In the aging place on this Wednesday after the Tuesday of Nov. 6

“It is a place of fierce energy,” Florida Scott-Maxwell wrote about being old (in her 1968 book The Measure of My Days). It was a place she had no idea existed until she arrived. Perhaps “passion would be a better word than energy,” she continued, for she was in her 80s and putting her “vivid life” into action meant she was soon “spent.”

I was reminded of these words on the passion of the aging place when I found myself in a conversation about immigrants and asylum seekers in Canada. There I was, arguing passionately — full throttle really — against the politics of resentment and fear I saw in the battle of the U.S. midterm elections but see in this country as well and heard reflected in the conversation.

Obviously a kind of ferocity still inhabits this place of my aging. Should I regret this? Had I imagined that serenity or tranquility or whatever quiet moderation “wisdom” implies would have no room for passion of this sort? I think I can say that a kind of serenity is slowly being won in the place of my aging, but certain lines of opinion remain passionate. I want these to be the lines for love, justice, big tent theology, big tent politics. I had actually come to believe, over my particular lifetime, that the world was heading (struggle notwithstanding) in a more generous direction. I’ve lost optimism on that. I’m not out of hope, but hope itself seems, today at least, necessarily fierce and bristly.

9 thoughts on “In the aging place on this Wednesday after the Tuesday of Nov. 6

  1. Hi Dora, I would have loved to be a fly on the wall during your passionate ‘ferocious’ conversation. I need an example of how to do that without alienating my contacts and I am sure you would be a great role model for exactly this kind of conversation. I also want to show and be passionate about “love, justice, big tent theology and big tent politics.” Thanks for this blog.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh I’m no model, Margaret, I’m sometimes “too” passionate, you know that! I actually think you have those skills, and I’m not just saying. Thanks for the affirmation of remaining passionate and your being part of that company!

      Like

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