Monday, September 3, 2012

Day 242, September 3

A man's mind is stretched by a new idea or sensation, and never shrinks back to its former dimensions.

Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.

Many years ago, when I was pregnant with my first child, a friend asked, "Why did you bother to graduate from college if you're just going to be a full-time mother?"

The question offended me on many levels.  First, there was the word "just."  There is no "just" in being a full-time mother.  Being a mother requires stamina, energy, intelligence, education, and a host of other qualities. 

Pertinent to today's blog, though, is the idea that any education, any learning, any sensation is wasted.   Every time we read something, every time we learn something, every time we think something, we stretch ourselves.  We stretch our minds, our abilitlies to understand, our vision of the world.  Would I have understood the Islamic view of gratitude, which I wrote about a few weeks ago, if I hadn't read of it in a book on gratitude?  Doubtful.  Now I have a greater appreciation for a faith which I had dismissed because of prejudice.

This I know for sure:  whatever learning and education we achieve in this life will remain with us, in this life and in the next.

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