Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Why passion matters

We often talk about passion as though it inevitably flares up and disappears.  I wonder if passion is really fleeting. While romance certainly changes over time, there are other things that inspire passion in us.

Yesterday I had coffee with friends from my days as an undergraduate at Trent University.  We last saw each other thirty years ago. (Yes - thirty years.  It freaked all of us out a little). The meeting happened because we connected on Linked In. It was a case of social media doing actual good.

What I discovered through the meeting was that we have had widely diverse experiences since Trent and we are still so strongly committed to the ideas and ideals that inspired us that our conversation was deep and wide and much too short.  Apparently we did know what we liked and what was important thirty years ago, because those same things seem to be important to us now.  The world has shifted and we have changed (not as much as we might have feared), but we recognize in ourselves and one another that same excitement about language and truth and community that we felt so many years ago.

This may be the best of all the reasons for doing work that inspires passion in you.  Year after year, you can recognize yourself by the commitment you feel to the same ideas and ideals. As much as you change, as much as the world changes, some things continue to feed your sense of who you are. It's kind of amazing to sit down with old friends and realize you knew what you were doing and where you wanted to go even though you were much too young to be that wise.


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