New Year thoughts

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In the transition period to the new year, many people tend to set ambitious goals for themselves. Most of the time, New Year’s resolutions fail. Nevertheless, religious philosopher Gesine Palmer believes that it makes sense to use the time in between to pause for a moment.

The old year ended with the last public holidays, and a new working year has begun. So, with some luck, we had a few days of undefined time: not really work, not really vacation, and even the often insatiable demands of religion.

There is no expectation of a full-blown vacation break, just that we collect ourselves a little and think about what should be different in the New Year. That’s how we are here: we like to plan, work through plans, and set ourselves deadlines within which a resolution is to be fulfilled.
Time to pause
At the same time, we know that some plans and resolutions are unlikely to be completed point-by-point because something always comes up. Time slots in which old plans can be ticked off as completed or unsuitable and new ones can be made with fresh courage are just what we need.

Of course, some interruptions to what we previously considered normal life are catastrophic and traumatic. The Israeli journalist David Witzthum wrote that the clocks stopped on October 7. This pause after terrible events is a natural psychological reaction to which we should pay more attention. It is true that, especially after disasters, all those responsible for something must continue to act. But every truly traumatised person should know for themselves that they are in a difficult and exceptional state.

Under so-called normal conditions, i.e., within a civilized order in which people are allowed to take their time to work with their emotional injuries consciously, traumatized people would always say: You first have to process your experience before you can go back to the control levers of highly effective machinery.
But what if this civilized order, in which people can develop such a responsibility for themselves and others, is called into question and comes under violent attack? It is precisely then that we must react quickly and clearly as a collective. But it is also precisely that we must create time for each soul to process the old and reorganize itself.


– hp/picture: Bild von Annette Meyer auf Pixabay

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