Recall a time of consolation and go back to it in imagination.

Margaret Silf, “What do do in desolation” from Inner Compass


When we are—as it were—torn up by some new hole of need in our life, remembering and reclaiming our past will help us claim hope and help for the present and the future. The patch comes from old cloth. The present need can be sutured by hope drawn from your past.

Br. Curtis Almquist


But the point is, now, at this moment, or any moment, we’re only cross-sections of our real selves. What we really are is the whole stretch of ourselves, all our time, and when we come to the end of this life, all those selves, all our time, will be us—the real you, the real me. And then perhaps we’ll find ourselves in another time, which is only another kind of dream.

J.B. Priestly, Time and the Conways


Do not fear the beauty of memories!

The past, admittedly, can be a source of immense pain.

And yet, the past is our story, our treasure, our jewell box, our wisdom.

Even if subsequent events—an estrangement, for example, or a death—have made you feel that a particular story had a sad ending, don’t allow the loveliness of a memory to be robbed from you.

No matter what, the past retains its own integrity, and we can draw strength and direction from it, remembering the original dreams with which we embarked on life, and setting our course again, recalling our true north.

We can gather it all

—the beauty and the sadness—

into a circle that will be redeemed by love.



Detail from a magazine advertisement for the perfume, L’Heure Bleu by Guerlain, c. 1974.

2 thoughts on “Reclaiming Our Past

  1. This is wonderful!
    Each of the quotes, and your own words, give so much food for thought – nourishing food that will take time to digest and absorb. Thank you

    Liked by 1 person

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