How to say, I live.

I thought of you when I read this quote from “Healing Justice: Stories of Wisdom and Love (How to Die Smiling Book 3)” by Jarem Sawatsky –

“There is a brokenness Out of which comes the unbroken, A shatteredness out of which blooms the unshatterable. There is a sorrow Beyond all grief which leads to joy And a fragility Out of which depth emerges strength. There is a hollow space Too vast for words Through which we pass with each loss, Out of whose darkness we are sanctified into being. There is a cry deeper than all sound Whose serrated edges cut the heart As we break open To the place inside which is unbreakable And whole, while learning to sing (Rashani 1991) What if justice is about becoming whole while learning to sing? How do we nurture the conditions where shatteredness might bloom into the unshatterable? What imagination and support are necessary to sustain that journey into darkness, where we are sanctified into being? How do we cultivate the ability to hear the cry that is deeper than all sound and to see the unbreakable in the broken? What if justice is meant to lead to joy, to emerging strengthened out of fragility, to finding our place in the song? What if many of our basic assumptions about justice are misguided? What if a more healing kind of justice is possible? What if it already exists? This poem so beautifully describes the transformation that can happen when we lean into our suffering and allow ourselves to break open. Only then can we find the unbreakable and whole, while learning to sing. When I was still teaching Peace and Conflict Transformation Studies at the university, I used this poem on the first day of classes to try to set the tone, direction, and color of class. Each time, some students were moved to tears because they too had experienced this grief that leads to joy. Somehow, the poem resonated with their true sense of themselves. I kept sharing it because it also kept speaking to my true self.”

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