Love, and Our Journey Through Life
The most prominent theme that stood out to me in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night or What you Will, was the theme of love throughout our lives and the effects it takes on us, whether it be real true love, or false love based off of infatuation. I found that this theme of love in the play connected to my experience with meditation because meditation taught me to focus on what I love and what is important to me in life. I realized that the scenarios that happen in the play happen all the time in real life, maybe not the exact same ones, or to that extent, but similar experiences for sure. Many experience love in different forms, whether it be wanting what you can’t have, wanting someone to want you, or getting caught up in the ideas of love and what it has to offer. All of these experiences lead to one discovering their inner self, what is important to them, and what they truly love in life. Just like these experiences throughout everyday life and the experiences between the characters of the Twelfth Night, meditation also leads to discovering these things.
In Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, there are many different love connections between the characters. These connections and experiences of true love and infatuation that the characters endure effects them very much, guiding where they end up and with who they end up with at the end. If it were not for Viola falling in love with the duke, perhaps she would have never tried so hard to win Olivia over for him, which would have led to Olivia never falling in love “Cesario” and marrying Sebastian. The love triangles and connections in the play emphasize how much one event leads to another, causing all of the pieces of life fall into place. The theme of love is so strong in the play that it guides the lives of almost all of the characters. These experiences that the characters face lead them to what they are truly looking for in their life, real and true love.
In relation to my mediation class and experience, the sessions have also helped to guide me to what is important in my life and what I am truly looking for. Meditation is always a part of the day that I can clear my mind, and afterwards clearly think. When thinking of the play, I reflect on how every encounter in my life, even with love, has brought me to where I am today, and who I am today, which continues to guide me through life and discover what it is I am truly looking for. Perhaps if I had not had the experiences I did in the past, I would not have come to Loyola, taken this English class, and experience meditation classes. Just like in the Twelfth Night, every event has led me to this moment right now, and where I am today.
Looking back on this semester and our English class, what I find most surprising and interesting is how much I have truly gotten out of the class, our discussions, and assignments. I’ve always thought of myself as someone who is constantly analyzing situations and the day. But this class gave me a whole new perspective and outlook on analyzing not just literature, but life, and the things around me that sometimes I take for granted. I feel that it made me a more observant person, and a better critical thinker. I find that now when I’m reading things I’m always thinking of what they really mean, and trying to interpret the true message behind it. Experiencing meditation classes was very fun as well; it was a completely different experience than I have ever had. At first I was nervous about the sessions and really wasn’t very excited, but looking back now I’m so happy that I did it and got involved in meditation. Overall I truly enjoyed this class; I felt that it has offered me a lot and that I will be walking away with a lot. It has been a great class and I’m proud of the new knowledge and experiences I will be walking away with.