Wednesday, May 18, 2011

A BIG QUESTION from the Idealist’s Journey

by Maureen Dizon, corps member serving at Winston Education Campus

Special thanks to my Idealist’s Journey group, Sojourners of Truth, and Shakespeare’s Hamlet for inspiring my answer to this BIG QUESTION!

Q. A “City Year” is a two-sided coin of both service & personal development. Which side is your focus?

A. Service or personal development—that is the question:

Whether 'tis necessary truly to select

the side of the coin seemingly selfless

or take arms to uplift one’s self-change

and by not choosing, losing. To serve, to grow—

we will—and by service to say we give

of ourselves, and the thousand moments

which we are able. ‘Tis an objective

devoutly to be sought. To serve, to grow—

to grow—perchance to gain: ay there’s the rub,

for in that growth what gains are made

when giving without condition,

from our service stem wholly. There’s the respect

that makes honor of the two-sided coin.

For who could serve and evade the spurt

of individual growth, the progress in self-reflection,

the fruition of one’s founding?

No corps member emerges unaltered, without having

but once abetted his community brethren.

Thus choosing falsely portrays us all,

and thus the native hue of resolution

is both.


I count myself lucky and honored to be able to serve and grow along with some of the most remarkable people I have ever known. As we near the end of our service year (one month left; make it count!) I have come to the realization that the Idealist’s Journey is without a clear final destination. Rather, today and all days to follow, we must continue to live our lives in the service of others. In doing so, we will not only positively affect the world around us, but we will find our own lives transformed as well.

For me, City Year has been a two-sided coin and I would not have spent it any other way.

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