Friday, September 3, 2010

Today's a New Day

A tautology if there ever was one.

I went to Ottawa to pick up some students flying in to begin their year at OLSWA. It's a time of new beginnings. For them - some of them never away from home before; for me - a new year, another chance to be a better teacher, to learn new things, to live a better life. And you know what, I'm gonna take it. Does our own soul know our deficiencies better than everyone else? Not always, but often. So if you were to make a list of all your faults, would others agree with you, or would they want to add some?

Case in point. I want to be more punctual and organized, so I bought a wristwatch. It is one of those sporty ones that I loved when I was young. I made sure it has a countdown timer on it, so I'll be sure to end classes on time. I tend to go on and on. Not good. Now I have to wear it, which will be the most difficult part. I want to be an ideal teacher.

Idealism, it seems, is a part of the melancholic personality. So is the desire to share oneself - like via a blog, for instance. Anne-Marie made me read a chapter from a book, and this chapter was on the four temperaments. Yes, I am melancholic. So, I pretty much spend my days as depicted in the great Durer's ridiculous engraving of that name (even a genius may commit folly - Durer, the genius in this case). So, in keeping with my idealism, I shall turn over the great pumpkin leaf that is C.K., and strive to be better.

I will not be what you say I am.

Labels get attached easily, and the worst part of it is when you yourself begin to believe it. I am a melancholic, but that does not mean I have to be draggy, unforgiving, and impractical. Do you believe people can change? Melancholics have a predisposition to being meditative. The Lord gave this as a natural grace to me, may He bless my prayer, that it may be a font of new life for me. A husband and a father doesn't need any additional motivation for being a better person - he lives in a house full of reasons. If there's one thing about that crazy Jesus that is clear from the Gospels, it's that He liked to give people second chances. Thus, He believes in change. St. Thomas remarks that the justification of the sinner is basically God's greatest work (see Summa, I II, q.113, a.9) Pretty cool.

The Better Collection

It has occurred to me - yes, 'poor' little me - that I have a better collection of books on and by Augustine than Carleton University. How do you like that!

I better put those books to good use in making the new me:

da quod iubes et iube quod vis!

Grant what You command and command what You will! (Confessions 10.29.40)


  1. I am surprised to hear you think you're a melancholic. You've always struck me as a sanguine.

    Hm. Interesting.

  2. I'm a whole lot of show, Jenna. You have to learn to live with yourself, and make the best of it!