It has the feel of an epic tale, and one that evokes compassion in me. All of the facts have not yet been revealed, however, it seems to me, that Saint Petreaus, has he had been referred to in one of the news accounts, represents an emperor who lost his clothes, all for the very public lesson that heart can no longer be separated from mind.
Another news report contributes to my experience of compassion for General Petraeus: A reporter shared, in very tender voice, the shambling effect that being in the Iraq/Afganistan war zones has on marriages.
In yet other news reports Ms. Broadwell is described as “driven.” It strikes me that General Petraeus might have encountered a woman warrior with strategies he had not yet mastered.
The root of my compassion, though, comes from looking at images of Petreaus, his wife, and his alleged lover, Broadwell, There is a facial similarity in the images of Petraeus and Broadwell; they both have angular faces. That same facial similarity does not exist in the images of the General and his wife of decades. His wife, Holly Petraeus, has a round face, a moon shaped face in contrast to her husband’s angular face. Geometry is everywhere in life and the similarity of the facial shapes of Petreaus and Broadwell suggest an innate simpatico, a baseline understanding of one another. The difference between the facial shapes of Petreaus, linear, and his wife, Holly’s circular face suggest that opposites attracted almost forty years ago and, I suspect, this couple has worked very hard over the years bridging partnership, collaboration and cooperation in their lives together. The images of the Petraeus family, at awards events for instance, suggest joy and happiness and I suspect that the gaps they bridged included mutual respect and loving parenting.
As a member of the public with no personal knowledge of any of these people, I wish each of them the best as they sort through their individual pieces in this very collective storyline. The take away message for me is that heart and mind can no longer live in separate compartments. What we need, feel and want deserves to be discerned as authentic to one’s soul or not. Once the need or want is discerned to be legitimate and authentic to one’s soul, then the need or want deserves to be met. There is always a way to do this and that way requires continued discerning and choosing, each step of the way. Once a teacher taught, “No problem is solid.”