As was suggested by one of our group during our discussion of the first installment of Carousel last night, Billy Bigelow was incapable of loving because he was incapable of loving himself. While we have discussed them often, Billy was a great model for one of the “Two Great Commandments.”
Taking it further, Padavano tells us that Homecoming has less to do with geography than it has to do with a sense of personal integrity or inner wholeness. The most important of all endeavors in life is to come home. The most terrifying of all fears is loneliness. It means that one has become a stranger to himself and consequently, to others. Someone truly loves us when he brings us home, when he makes us comfortable with ourselves. We are loved when we are no longer frightened with ourselves. The human heart was made to be at home with itself.
Another of our group reminds us that God is our link to all love: all impulses of love [emanate from] and return to the love that made them. (Thornton Wilder)