January 6

  

Today's quotation:

You must have been warned against letting the golden hours slip by; but some of them are golden only because we let them slip by.

James M. Barrie

Today's Meditation:

We who inhabit the world today have become a part of the culture of doing.  We have somehow bought into the notion that we always must be accomplishing something, we always must be on the go.  We have over-committed ourselves and we find it very hard to say no to anyone who asks anything from us.  We have relegated rest and relaxation to the status of "luxury" rather than keeping it at the status of "necessity," which is where it should be.

For most of the people I know, I would love to see them make a simple New Year's resolution:  to relax more and to commit themselves less.  If they were able to do so, they would find their quality of life significantly improved, and they would find their stress levels significantly lower.

Every once in a while, I find myself so caught up in doing things that I start to imagine that that's what life is all about, that that's what I somehow need to be doing.  I don't have time for walks in the woods or for sitting quietly reading a good book--heaven forbid that I waste two perfectly good hours just sitting there, reading!  I get a restless feeling, an urge to get up and DO something.  I find it to be a very nice feeling when I can say to myself, "Forget it.  You don't need to be doing anything right now, and sitting here quietly, reading a book, is time very well spent."  Some moments must be allowed to slip by, quietly and peacefully, not filled with activity.

Questions to consider:

What do you do when your mind is asking you to slow down and find some peace and quiet?  Do you tell yourself to ignore your mind, or do you find the quiet time?

How often do you allow yourself to do something "useless," such as playing solitaire or putting together a jigsaw puzzle?

Do you judge yourself on how much you accomplish, or on how much you're growing and learning as a human being?

How do you treat others when you're stressed?  When you're relaxed?

For further thought:

The present moment is never intolerable. It is always what is coming in five minutes or five days that makes people despair.  The Law of Life is to live in the present, and this applies to both time and place.  Keep your attention to the present moment, and in the place where your body is now.  Do a fair day's work, and then stop.  Overwork is not productive in the long run.

Emmet Fox

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