Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Tragic Wisdom of a Broken Heart

Last night, we had our annual event in remembrance of our former department chair Norman Richardson and one of the speakers was an alum who had Professor Richardson back in the late 50s. He recounted that he wished two things for his students -- one of which was that they suffer a broken heart.

Does a broken heart impart insight that is not accessible in any other way? If so, what? Is it a breaking down of artifices, a shaking down of us to our cores making those painful places full of baggage and insecurities unavoidably open to us forcing us to deal with that which we can usually sweep under the psychic rug? Does it make us radically reconsider our paths forward opening us to possibilities we were blind to before? Is it a time to reclaim autonomy, to be forced to feel comfortable in our own skin without the crutch of another's personality to lean on?

That horrible feeling of devastation, what is the silver lining?