Thoughts and Reflections by my grandfather Karl Johan Granholm

Karl Johan Granholm.jpg

Travel backwards in time and enter the mind of my grandfather, Karl Johan Granholm, 102 years ago, to 1908 when he wrote “My Thoughts and Reflections,” and immerse yourself in his thoughts, reflections, and hopes. It is amazing how his thoughts, a reflection of life in his time, reflect our own times and lives. May we all strive for an understanding of life he so eloquently expressed 102 years ago…

(Pictured is my brother Karl Johan Granholm, grandson of our grandfather Karl Johan Granholm)


I sit today, a Sunday, contemplating my half finished new dwelling which will contain a heated room on the upper floor. The thoughts wander to a long harbored wish to make a room for the family where to gather. May this become our “gathering room” where we together will be able to exchange views of the experiences of life, both in the natural and spiritual world.

The need for a closer understanding of each other within the family, in these social times, is clear. The young get enthusiastic and are cradled in the different maelstroms of life, both good and bad, healthy and harmful, for body and soul. The elder in the family who, in accordance with the law of nature, are more conservative – with a narrower, older view of things – often have a difficult time comprehending and appreciating the justification of all new ideas, because of the reason that the older ones have passed their development phase, already experienced their youth and won a certain perception of wisdom of life, as well as learned the value of life, and realized that not everything that glitters in the fantasies of youth is gold. Only a small percent of the carats which are contained therein are real. These differences in viewpoints, it appears to me, should be settled already within the home and family, to the extent possible, in order to gain understanding.

Every society requires cooperation among its members to attain the goals of the society. The state requires loyal and cooperating citizens. How important, for this reason, is cooperation in the home, which must lay the foundation for all civic and spiritual life. If this is neglected – which often is the case – the reasons and consequences are clear. The family members find no compassion for each other and consequently can not act in consonance with each other. The outcome will be disagreements and fights. Initially in thoughts; thoughts give birth to words and reap action.

Going back to my reflection about the half finished new dwelling, I wish we would reach a higher plateau in this warm attic room, here we could bring our higher and warmer thoughts to be exchanged. The elders’ thoughts to possibly rejuvenate and the youngers’ to mature. The thought itself is neither young nor old. It is eternal, – immortal, though always new. But sowed, it gives birth to action, good or evil.

May we learn to live a life in real harmony. To now and then detach the thought from everyday; its struggles and worries for tomorrow, taking one day at a time, as it is given to us. Share its pleasures and pains in common understanding among young and old.

Let us remember, when we gaze out through our new attic window over hills and vales, that we are no higher beings. Let us turn our eye toward the height from where the all-seeing eye, in its mercy, looks down upon us, searching out our innermost thoughts in our hearts.

     May He lead and teach us to think and live the real family life.
                                  Karl Johan Granholm, Teerijärv, Finland 1908

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