March 2


Today's Quotation:

You know of the disease in Central Africa called sleeping sickness. . . .  There also exists a sleeping sickness of the soul.  Its most dangerous aspect is that one is unaware of its coming.  That is why you have to be careful.  As soon as you notice the slightest sign of indifference, the moment you become aware of the loss of a certain seriousness, of longing, of enthusiasm and zest, take it as a warning.  You should realize your soul suffers if you live superficially.

Albert Schweitzer

Today's Meditation:

Are you awake?  Ask yourself this question very seriously, and you may be surprised at the answer.  Sometimes I ask myself if I'm truly awake at a given time or in a given situation, and unfortunately, the answer comes back negative.  Somehow, I fall back into a place of comfort, a place of passivity, a place in which I miss much of what goes on in the world around me.  It's not that nice of a place--it's comfortable while I'm there, but I do miss much of life's wonder while I am there.

Think of it in contemporary terms:  imagine that you're a passenger in a car or plane traveling through one of the most beautiful places in the world.  With each new moment, something wonderful and beautiful appears that would take your breath away, if only you saw it.  But you don't see it, because you're engrossed in the game on your Gameboy--the same game that you've played at least 100 times already, but this time you think you may be able to go a little bit further.

In the film Harold and Maude, Maude tells Harold "A lot of people enjoy being dead.  But they're not dead, really--they're just backing away from life."  I believe that this is where the myth of zombies partially originates--zombies are the walking dead, animated creatures with no life.

Awareness of what is around us is extremely important for all of us.  If our eyes and minds aren't open, then we stagnate, and we all know how stagnant water tastes--it's not very pleasant at all, and it's potentially deadly.

Questions to ponder:

1.  What new things in your life did you notice yesterday?  If you didn't notice any, do you think that's because there were no new things?

2.  Can you think of any specific ways that you can increase your awareness?

3.  About what types of things are you indifferent?  What causes your indifference?

For further thought:

I shall open my eyes and ears.  Once every day I shall simply stare at a tree, a flower, a cloud, or a person.  I shall not then be concerned at all to ask what they are but simply be glad that they are.  I shall joyfully allow them their "divine, magical, and ecstatic" existence.

Clyde S. Kilby

more thoughts and ideas on awareness



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