To the artist He is the one altogether lovely, and to the educator He is the master teacher. To the philosopher He is the wisdom of God, and to the lonely He is a brother; to the sorrowful, a comforter to the bereaved, the resurrection and the life. And to the sinner he is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin from the world.
... most bereaved souls crave nourishment more tangible than prayers: they want a steak. What is more, they need a steak. Preferably they need it rare, grilled, heavily salted, for that way it is most easily digested, and most quickly turned into the glandular whip their tired adrenals cry for.
M. F. K. Fisher
Television has never known what to do with grief, which resists narrative: the dramas of grief are largely internal - for the bereaved, it is a chaotic, intense, episodic period, but the chaos is by and large subterranean, and easily appears static to the friendly onlooker who has absorbed the fact of loss and moved on.
[Sylvia Plath] was now far along a peculiarly solitary road on which not many would risk following her. So it was important for her to know that her messages were coming back clear and strong. Yet not even her determinedly bright self-reliance could disguise the loneliness that came from her almost palpably, like a heat haze. She asked for neither sympathy nor help but, like bereaved widow at a wake, she simply wanted company in her mourning.
If, as a culture, we don't bear witness to grief, the burden of loss is placed entirely upon the bereaved, while the rest of us avert our eyes and wait for those in mourning to stop being sad, to let go, to move on, to cheer up. And if they don't "" if they have loved too deeply, if they do wake each morning thinking, I cannot continue to live "" well, then we pathologize their pain; we call their suffering a disease. We do not help them: we tell them that they need to get help.
We are deeply saddened by the tremendous loss of life and devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina, .. Starbucks has a long tradition of striving to bring together people and communities where we do business. We extend our heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families and many others impacted by this natural disaster; our prayers and thoughts are with all the families who have lost loved ones.
If, as a culture, we don't bear witness to grief, the burden of loss is placed entirely upon the bereaved, while the rest of us avert our eyes and wait for those in mourning to stop being sad, to let go, to move on, to cheer up. And if they don't - if they have loved too deeply, if they do wake each morning thinking, I cannot continue to live - well, then we pathologize their pain; we call their suffering a disease. We do not help them: we tell them that they need to get help.
Our greatest fear is that we will lose the love in our life... that we will be abandoned, left alone, bereaved, misunderstood, deprived, hated and rejected....but we can never be OUT OF LOVE. We are love and if our minds separate ourselves from who we really are it is a painful delusion. Ego personalities, including our own, might separate ourselves from love but love never dies because it is what we are made of.
We are all inspired by the incredible stories of handicapped people who write novels with their toes, cancer victims who run marathons for cancer research, bereaved parents who set up memorial funds for their lost children. How much easier is it for most of us to be small heroes simply by taking responsibility for our daily lives and transcending our ordinary obstacles?
He takes no pleasure in human tears. He came and wept that He might stop forever the fountain of human tears. He came and bereaved His mother that He might heal all bereavement. He came and lost everything that He might heal the wounds that we have from losing things. And He wants us to take pleasure in Him. Let us put away our doubts and trust Him.
For many, love is a two-sided coin. It can strengthen or stifle, expand or enfeeble, perfect or pauperize. When love is returned, we soar. We are taken to heights unseen, where it delights, invigorates, and beautifies. When love is spurned, we feel crippled, disconsolate, and bereaved. Polish the coin and you will see only requited love on both sides. I was destined to love you and I will belong to you forever.
She closed her eyes, silently continuing the pleas that she be given words that might soothe, words that would begin the healing of bereaved parents. She had seen, when she entered the kitchen, the chasm of sorrow that divided man and wife already, each deep in their own wretched suffering, neither knowing what to say to the other. She knew that to begin to talk about what had happened was a key to acknowledging their loss, and that such acceptance would in turn be a means to enduring the days and months ahead.
It has always seemed to me that the only painless death must be that which takes the intelligence by violent surprise and from the rear so to speak since if death be anything at all beyond a brief and peculiar emotional state of the bereaved it must be a brief and likewise peculiar state of the subject as well and if aught can be more painful to any intelligence above that of a child or an idiot than a slow and gradual confronting with that which over a long period of bewilderment and dread it has been taught to regard as an irrevocable and unplumbable finality, I do not know it.
Most people in this country are looking for literature that is useful. They feel that just exploring their feelings is good enough - they should be reading about leveraged buy-outs or how to get thin. We live in a culture that is so absolutely, madly focused on commercialism and on creating money and completely turned away from any other kind of creative value. People don't generally turn to poetry unless they're bereaved or have fallen in love. Or in adolescence, when their feelings are very strong and turbulent. I think most of us are dying for lack of spirit in this culture.
There is not much talking now. A silence falls upon them all. This is no time to talk of hedges and fields, or the beauties of any country. Sadness and fear and hate, how they well up in the heart and mind, whenever one opens pages of these messengers of doom. Cry for the broken tribe, for the law and the custom that is gone. Aye, and cry aloud for the man who is dead, for the woman and children bereaved. Cry, the beloved country, these things are not yet at an end. The sun pours down on the earth, on the lovely land that man cannot enjoy. He knows only the fear of his heart.
Then, already, it had brought to his mind the silence brooding over beds in which he had let men die. There as here it was the same solemn pause, the lull that follows battle; it was the silence of defeat. But the silence now enveloping his dead friend, so dense, so much akin to the nocturnal silence of the streets and of the town set free at last, made Rieux cruelly aware that this defeat was final, the last disastrous battle that ends a war and makes peace itself an ill beyond all remedy. The doctor could not tell if Tarrou had found peace, now that all was over, but for himself he had a feeling that no peace was possible to him henceforth, any more than there can an armistice for a mother bereaved of a son or for a man who buries his friend.
Sin! Sin! Thou art a hateful and horrible thing, that abominable thing which God hates. And what wonder? Thou hast insulted His holy majesty; thou hast bereaved Him of beloved children; thou hast crucified the Son of His infinite love; thou hast vexed His gracious Spirit; thou hast defied His power; thou hast despised His grace; and in the body and blood of Jesus, as if that were a common thing, thou hast trodden under foot His matchless mercy. Surely, brethren, the wonder of wonders is, that sin is not that abominable thing which we also hate.
In a world of change and decay not even the man of faith can be completely happy. Instinctively he seeks the unchanging and is bereaved at the passing of dear familiar things. Yet much as we may deplore the lack of stability in all earthly things, in a fallen world such as this the very ability to change is a golden treasure, a gift from God of such fabulous worth as to call for constant thanksgiving. For human beings the whole possibility of redemption lies in their ability to change. To move across from one sort of person to another is the essence of repentance; the liar becomes truthful, the thief honest, the lewd pure, the proud humble. The whole moral texture of the life is altered. The thoughts, the desires, the affections are transformed, and the man is no longer what he had been before.
People who have recently lost someone have a certain look, recognizable maybe only to those who have seen that look on their own faces. I have noticed it on my face and I notice it now on others. The look is one of extreme vulnerability, nakedness, openness. It is the look of someone who walks from the ophthalmologist's office into the bright daylight with dilated eyes, or of someone who wears glasses and is suddenly made to take them off. These people who have lost someone look naked because they think themselves invisible. I myself felt invisible for a period of time, incorporeal. I seemed to have crossed one of those legendary rivers that divide the living from the dead, entered a place in which I could be seen only by those who were themselves recently bereaved. I understood for the first time the power in the image of the rivers, the Styx, the Lethe, the cloaked ferryman with his pole. I understood for the first time the meaning in the practice of suttee. Widows did not throw themselves on the burning raft out of grief. The burning raft was instead an accurate representation of the place to which their grief (not their families, not the community, not custom, their grief) had taken them.
Thee, my serenity, one can not bear, Seeing thee befuddled, bereaved, Dimmed like the midnight, secluded, darkened, Thee, my serenity, A window to my eyes, A window to laughter, and peace of mind, Thee, my serenity, one can not bear, Seeing thee wail, whine, cry, Like a gloomy, mourning brume, Thee, my serenity, Soared through fervor and delight, To the crown of heavens, the Almighty Myth, One can not bear, Seeing thee prostrate, razed, demure, Upon the dimmed streets, crawling, for a sight of the lune, Thee, my birdy in love, What befall to thy song, The very chant of my life, Cut short, stopped, along with all I gasp, Thee, my serenity, one can not bear, Seeing thee, caged in thy own night, Encumbered, through thy own heart, Lean on my shoulders now, My beautiful, wonderful Lily, That thee shall not fear, the sorrow of, Of being lonely, apart, not having a peer, As I promise, to my most dear, The girl to my heart, always near, Come what may, don't age a year, That I will be, forever here,
My Serinity, Thee, my serenity, one can not bear, Seeing thee befuddled, bereaved, Dimmed like the midnight, secluded, darkened, Thee, my serenity, A window to my eyes, A window to laughter, and peace of mind, Thee, my serenity, one can not bear, Seeing thee wail, whine, cry, Like a gloomy, mourning brume, Thee, my serenity, Soared through fervor and delight, To the crown of heavens, the Almighty Myth, One can not bear, Seeing thee prostrate, razed, demure, Upon the dimmed streets, crawling, for a sight of the lune, Thee, my birdy in love, What befall to thy song, The very chant of my life, Cut short, stopped, along with all I gasp, Thee, my serenity, one can not bear, Seeing thee, caged in thy own night, Encumbered, through thy own heart, Lean on my shoulders now, My beautiful, wonderful Lily, That thee shall not fear, the sorrow of, Of being lonely, apart, not having a peer, As I promise, to my most dear, The girl to my heart, always near, Come what may, don't age a year, That I will be, forever here,