Learning as Healing

Posted by on Nov 9, 2016 in About me, Art Adventures | 4 comments


Hello all of you that are still out there.

It has been five months since I have posted which is the longest break I have taken since I started blogging in 2008.

My health is still a challenge that takes a lot of time, but I am managing. Playing tennis, singing in a choir, making plans to do a hippy road trip in my van next summer. More about that adventure later.

Today is profoundly sad for me. Recently I have been focused, or trying to focus, on a positive future, and for me, that does not include what happened yesterday. I am disheartened that our country is in the state it is in, I am profoundly sad that meanness, dishonesty and combativeness have taken such a stronghold on our citizenry. At times like this I really need to ferret out an inspiration to move forward, and here is what I offer you. It is a quote from “The Once and Future King’ by T.H. White. It is the story of the young King Arthur as he learns from the magician, Merlyn.

“ The best thing for being sad,” replied Merlyn, beginning to puff and blow, “is to learn something. That is the only thing that never fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then—to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning is the thing for you. Look at what a lot of things there are to learn—pure science, the only purity there is. You can learn astronomy in a lifetime, natural history in three, literature in six. And then, after you have exhausted a milliard lifetimes in biology and medicine and theocriticism and geography and history and economics—why, you can start to make a cartwheel out of the appropriate wood, or spend fifty years learning to begin to learn to beat your adversary at fencing. After that you can start again on mathematics, until is it is time to learn to plough.
— Merlin, in the Once and Future King

So this is what I intend to do. Learn. Why the world wags, and what wags it. I will spend my year preparing for my road trip through the West Coast next year in my hippy van learning what I have to share that will make a difference. Maybe I will learn about a culture I know nothing about, maybe a religion. What I want to learn is how to be a world citizen on the most effective level possible. That is what I believe will heal me and perhaps some of you. Learning.

Blessings to all of you.


  1. Wonderful to hear from you…

  2. Inspiration I sadly needed today. Thank you, Jill.

  3. A favourite book from my late teens and yes, still so full of wisdom which is much needed today. Let me know if your West Coast trip extends up into BC. It would be so great to chat again.

  4. I am so very glad to see you back. And thank you for this wonderful and very true passage from The Once and Future King. Learning is being open to life!

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