“There is sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.” ~ Henry Irving …
Unfortunately, today’s culture tends to trivialize the importance of our tears. We, as a society, often look down upon those who cry, and sometimes even criticize and ridicule them. Especially as a man, I am often confronted with the image that crying is a sign of weakness and an indication that I am out of touch with my masculinity. But when we look at our tears in such a way, we minimalize their purpose and their power, for tears are a cleansing force, “a mark of power” as Henry puts it.
Tears are the source and the channel through which healing spills over from the physical realm into our souls. They soothe and comfort our burdened heart and begin the restorative process of healing. They are a soothing balm for our souls. And when it comes down to it, if tears are able to take away even the slightest bit of pain, sorrow, frustration, or hopelessness that we feel, then they should be embraced and welcomed as an effective way to deal with our feelings and emotions.
When we are able to let our hearts be moved to tears, we exhibit true strength of expression, for we allow ourselves to feel deeply and we accept those feelings. Furthermore, because we do not worry about what others might think, feel, or say about our tears, our expression is one of true authenticity. And as for crying because of someone else’s pain, such as while watching a movie, we should not feel embarrassed, for those tears are part of our connections we share with one another. And the fact that we are moved to tears is a wonderful sign of our humanity–of how we can experience the someone else’s pain on a personal level, a level of empathy. Such compassion is truly a blessing in our lives, for it allows us to appreciate the connections we share with those in our lives–those we love, those we comfort, those whose lives we touch, whose friendships mean the world to us.
If we feel love for others in our lives, then we must be strong enough to share that love with them–to express those feelings when they are felt regardless of whether or not that involves tears, for our tears speak more about who we are and what we value than any words could. But we do them a disservice when we limit them to sadness alone.
Seek to look more favorably on your ability to cry and allow yourself to express your feelings through tears.
Questions to consider:
Why have tears been looked on so much as a sign of weakness?
Why do so many people use tears as a form of manipulation? What about us responds to tears in a way that would allow people to do so?
How could tears possibly be seen as a mark of power?
For further thought:
“Heaven knows we need never be ashamed of our tears, for they are rain upon the blinding dust of earth, overlying our hard hearts. I was better after I had cried, than before–more sorry, more aware of my own ingratitude, more gentle.” ~ Charles Dickens, Great Expectations