Our Pride, Prejudice, Patience, and Prudence

Played out to the Very End

Photo Credit- In the Park 3 Stock Photo - Fran Priestly

I’ve always admired teachers and writers. I knew they were going to teach me something new that I didn’t know. They’ve also taught me through their books, and lately, I’ve had one of my biggest aha moments watching the restored, remastered British television mini-series of Pride and Prejudice that was based on the novel. It’s remarkable how sometimes we’re able to find the answers to our own life riddles in the characters we’ve long loved and admired, something that might have been hidden from some of us but was there all along. We’re always learning from great teachers who lovingly and passionately pass their knowledge onto us, and I hope I can pass something along to you.

In my later years, I’m more selective when I read or listen to wisdom teachers. That’s because it seems everyone is teaching and writing these days, and we’re all surely students for life. It’s important to know our teachers and our own motivations before we attempt to teach others. There are many who not only graciously succeed in their field of expertise but more importantly, continue to thrive in it. They’re the ones who have the most to teach through their relationship stories and through talking about their experiences. Theirs are the richest and most valuable stories that are passed on to us. Without the examples of these experiences, we might not hear or see our own lessons as clearly. Teachers and their stories are usually the best lessons for us because we can usually recognize ourselves in them.

Movies and plays can provide great lessons and motivators for some of us while also entertaining us. This helps us to carefully select the types of movies or plays we want to see to entertain us while helping to show us our own character strengths or flaws. Most of the time we don’t see our own reflection through reading or in relationships close to us, and sometimes we need to see it in a fictitious character who is like ourselves, but larger than ourselves, and most importantly, played out to the very end. Even with things shown under this spotlight, it is only when we carefully listen to the characters’ stories that we might recognize our own patterns being played out before us. This might help to correct something in ourselves, or even reveal the rewards we reap from patience and prudence.

My aha moment came through for me after 35 years of marriage and conflicts between me and my husband that had lain unrecognized until watching Pride and Prejudice. As a people, my husband and I are not alike in most ways, but yet more alike than anyone that I’ve ever known when it comes to the moral responsibilities of our immediate family and our siblings. This alone was powerful enough to attract me to marriage, and that is what I’ve learned from watching the film. And to think that it came through and soothed my questioning heart 35 years later. I clearly recall the first time I admired my then husband-to-be’s loving responses to his own family; this was most important to me. Another breakthrough came through watching this film. That was in seeing the sincere and heartfelt love, along with the reasons for Mr. Darcy’s snobbish and arrogant behavior compared to Mr. Wickham, whose false charms deceived everyone around him. We all might know these types of personalities and probably by their first names. I hope we may all see through them with the discernment that will keep us safe.

I’ve been so lighthearted since seeing Pride and Prejudice that I longed to share these insights with anyone who feels that their marriage partner is too different from them so that they may be able to discover a strong and powerful characteristic they have in common, something that probably brought them together in the first place. That one uncovered detail might be all that you need to live in a state of bliss with your partner, starting today.

If you’re watching films that especially resonate with you, there is sure to be a message that stirs your heart and points the way for you. So my advice is to be very selective about what you read and the movies you watch. That’s because your spirit’s deepest longing is to know the truth about yourself. It will help you to soar higher and to let you know the very best of you.

About Catherine Nagle: Catherine grew up in Philadelphia with 16 brothers and sisters, reared by loving, old-school Italian parents. Her artist father’s works graced churches and public buildings; her mother was a full-time homemaker. A professional hairdresser, Catherine worked in various salons while studying the Bible and pursuing spiritual growth through courses, seminars, lectures, the works of Marianne Williamson, and through various conferences on spirituality.

She is an ambassador of the Society of Emotional Intelligence and a frequent contributor to the Huffington Post and Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global. The mother of two children, and a grandmother, she lives in Pennsylvania with her husband. She is the author of “Imprinted Wisdom” and “Absence and Presence” and “Amelia” and a contributor to Anne Born’s, “These Winter Months.”

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