Today I have had a lot on my mind. Trying to decide to have surgery, getting immersed in a new ward (which went great btw. More on that to come)etc. Where did I turn?- yes to the scriptures, prayer and friends but also to Mr. Oscar Wilde and his play An Ideal Husband. Who would have thought that a gay man from the late 19th century would have so much to to teach a Mormon girl in 2012.
The play is about a politician who has a past unbeknownst to all of his friends including the silly Lord Goring. Unfortunately this past is used as blackmail and all pandemonium breaks free. Well, here are some quotes that made me laugh and some that made me think:
Lord Arthur Goring: Fashion is what one wears oneself. What is unfashionable is what other people wear. Other people are quite dreadful. The only possible society is oneself.
Lord Caversham: I don’t know how you stand society. A lot of damned nobodies talking about nothing.
Lord Arthur Goring: I love talking about nothing, Father. It’s the only thing I know anything about.
Lord Arthur Goring: I’m sorry, Father, but the truth is, this is not my day for talking seriously.
Lord Caversham: Well, what do you mean, sir?
Lord Arthur Goring: I mean that I only talk seriously on the first Tuesday of every month. Between noon and three.
Mabel: Lord Goring, I gather you’re to be congratulated.
Lord Arthur Goring: Well, there’s nothing I like more than to be congratulated, though invariably I find the pleasure immeasurably increased when I know what for.
Lord Arthur Goring: There’s somebody I want to you talk to.
Lord Caversham: What about?
Lord Arthur Goring: About me, sir.
Lord Caversham: Not a subject on which much eloquence is possible.
Lord Arthur Goring: Rather than risk losing your love, he would do anything. Has he not been punished enough?
Gertrude: We’ve both been punished. I set him up too high.
Lord Arthur Goring: Do not set him down now too low.
(I like this one when thinking of couples I know after a break up. Someone once too high, suddenly becomes too low.)
Lord Arthur Goring: Gertrude, it is not the perfect, but rather the imperfect who have need of love.
Gertrude: You seem to know a great deal about it all of a sudden.
Lord Arthur Goring: Oh, I hope not. All I know, Gertrude, is that it takes great courage to see the world in all its tainted glory, and still to love it. And even more courage to see it in the one you love. Gertrude, you have more courage than any woman I have ever known. Do not be afraid now to use it.
I think that last one is true of yourself. Don’t you have those moments where you see yourself in all its tainted glory? I do. Have had those moments lately (something about turning 31. You must face your own mortality, your own value to the world). I feel closer to God and Jesus Christ than ever before. In fact, I haven’t felt their presence as palpably in my life since my mission.
It is certainly true that ‘it is not the perfect, but rather the imperfect who have need of love.’ I’m proof of that! We all are. (Unless the perfect man really is out there and if so please show yourself to me at once!)
It reminds me of one of my favorite speeches The Solitude of Self by Elizabeth Cady Stanton:
“To guide our own craft, we must be captain, pilot, engineer; with chart and compass to stand at the wheel; to watch the winds and waves, and know when to take in the sail, and to read the signs in the firmament over all. It matters not whether the solitary voyager is man or woman; nature, having endowed them equally, leaves them to their own skill and judgment in the hour of danger, and, if not equal to the occasion, alike they perish.”
There are moments in life when you get to know yourself- Aren’t those tough? but we need them to see our true potential. Working on that right now, the solitude of self…