“Closure” is one of many psychobabble buzz words of recent times. I Googled “why closure is so important” and got almost 6 million results!
Why do we feel the need to have some kind of closure with the past before we can move on?
It sounds like it should be a complex issue, but the answer is really fairly simple. We human beings are programmed to try to understand our environment. We aren’t all that content with the concept of “it is what it is.” We want to know why it is what it is.
This trait is extremely important to our survival and our development as a species. Indeed, it is probably the single most important factor in why we are the dominant species on the planet! By figuring out why something happened, we can either make it happen again if it was a good thing, or try to avoid having it happen again if it wasn’t so great. This need to understand the what, how and why is often the stimulant for human ingenuity and invention as well.
When we understand what’s going on we can make adjustments, come up with solutions. When we are left in the dark, we are uneasy.
The topic of closure popped into my head as a good subject to talk about this week because I just read JoAnn Bassett’s latest release, Kaua’i Me a River. This book’s a bit more serious than the others in her Islands of Aloha mystery series (although it still has its humorous moments). It is a very compelling story. I believe it’s my favorite of the series (and I’ve liked them all!)
The main character, Pali Moon, is minding her own business, trying to ignore her thirty-fifth birthday, when she receives a not very informative letter from a lawyer requesting her presence at a meeting to discuss an “urgent family matter.” That letter reopens some old wounds and Pali (pronounced Polly) becomes determined to find out what really happened to her mother, who died when Pali was just five years old. She risks a lot to find out what happened and why… pursuing that need for closure.
We may not always like what we find out, but unanswered questions from our past tend to leave us psychologically incomplete. For better or worse, we humans need to understand the past in order to put it to rest and move on.
Have you had times when a lack of closure has left you feeling incomplete or unable to move on?
We blog here at misterio press once a week about more serious topics, usually on Monday or Tuesday. Sometimes we blog again, on Friday or the weekend, with something just for fun.
Please follow us by filling in your e-mail address where it says “subscribe to blog via email” in the column on the right, so you don’t miss out on any of the interesting stuff, or the fun!