There is a dangerous silence in that hour,
A stillness, which leaves room for the full soul
To open all itself, without the power
Of calling wholly back its self-control;
The silver light which, hallowing tree and tower,
Sheds beauty and deep softness o'er the whole,
Breathes also to the heart, and o'er it throws
A loving languor, which is not repose.
Don Juan, first canto, stanza 114
I was drawn to the stanza of poetry when considering contemplations of the Australian Nation of marriage legislation. The potential conclusion of such contemplations is that same-sex couples will be availed marriage status. Such change will not affect only the same-sex couples – it will affect others in society.
The stanza speaks to how the full soul opens in such a manner that it may change without self-control. It speaks of how a listless outcome may arise for the soul. The soul may not find rest. The reference to ‘self-control’ is particularly captivating. It is captivating in that vitriolic secular/church incidents that have arisen perhaps illustrate an absence of self-control. The reference to silver light is also captivating – it suggests that a richer light – a gold light, perhaps - has eluded us all.
I draw from the stanza in that the nation’s soul is currently open. The nation’s soul is exposed - rhetoric (silver light) has replaced robust debate (gold light). The soul may shut and be forever without rest.
The change of definition of marriage is profound. The implications of the change are deep. No-one wants a ‘loving langour, which is not repose’.
Note 1: All links good as at 11 September 2017
Note 2: After the reign of the militia in Argentina the nation was open to some freedoms that arguably damaged its heart. The oppression of the militia was not itself favorable and yet the end of the militia opened a time when pornography, marital infidelity, divorce and the like increased. I raise this as all times of social change (even good change) need deep consideration of all societal implications.