December 20


Today's quotation:

Living life fully doesn't mean having it all, going everywhere, doing everything, and being all things to all people.  Many of us are beginning to see that too much is too much.

Elaine St. James

Today's Meditation:

It's really easy for us to see that some people were meant to do some things, while others weren't.  Music comes easy to some people, while others are really good at writing or football or even selling things.  We all have our gifts that hopefully we will develop fully.

When it comes to other things, though, we somehow seem to feel a sense of entitlement, a sense that enough is never enough.  Personally, I would love to have a wide-screen HDTV, preferably plasma or LCD to watch movies on.  Other people have them, so why shouldn't I?

I'll tell you why:  because I don't watch that much television, and I don't watch that many movies.  If I were to buy such a television set, it would simply be a waste of money, sitting there mocking me every day that I didn't turn it on.  And what would I be doing with the money I spent on it?  Why, nothing, of course-- it would be gone.

We can live life fully without filling our time with doing everything and going everywhere.  We can live our lives quite fully without amassing fortunes or piles of possessions.  When we fill our lives with too much, we leave precious little empty space to move around in, little room to breathe easy without a sense of claustrophobia or of being overwhelmed.  That space is what allows us to keep our sanity, and it helps us to keep a sense of perspective.  It gives us a place to retreat to when we need peace, and if we fill it with things or activities, then we're taking a very important part of our lives out of commission.

Questions to consider:

Is there anything that you have too much of?  What?  What do you do about that?

Why do we tend to fill all of the spaces of our lives?  Why can't we let space be space?

How do we go about recognizing what's essential and what isn't?

For further thought:

It's possible to have too much in life.  Too many clothes jade our appreciation for new ones; too much money can put us out of touch with life; too much free time can dull the edge of the soul.  We need sometimes to come very near the bone so that we can taste the marrow of life rather than its superfluities.

Joan Chittister

more thoughts and ideas on simplicity



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