Monday, December 27, 2010

After Christmas

The house is quiet and I am feeling the need to put the holiday away and create a bit of starkness in the house. I suspect the weather greatly influences my mood. The bare trees, the shades of gray, contrasted by a red cardinal, bright berries on a bush, a sturdy rose that refuses to admit the season. This is a time for me to sit in reflection, ponder the great mysteries of life while looking out the window, gray clouds hanging low in the late December sky. Ice on fence posts and wood smoke circling and dancing in the winter winds. It is a time of the year I love, its moody, artistic in nature.

I am reading once again the book by the Dalai Lama titled, "Becoming Enlightened". It makes you think deeply about your own spiritual walk. In the 4th chapter there is a paragraph that I cannot get out of my mind...."In Tibetan the word for "religion" is cho, which means to adjust, to improve, to change for the better. The basic idea is to transform that which produces pain, to overcome our unruly attitudes.." Apply that concept to Christianity and you would have a major revival. Far less judging others and far more deeply and profoundly content people. Imagine if we honestly believed that God gave us the Bible as a gift to help us live a life with less pain and suffering here and now. We would live in far less fear, far less worry over meeting some standard. We would understand that Jesus spoke each and every word to help us live in greater harmony and overcome the thoughts and actions that cause us pain. We would see the love in the words, not have to sit through sermons of hell fire and brimstone, or jump up and down in some frenzied state. We would, with a deep and abiding peace work with joy to overcome our angry thoughts, our grudges towards others, our nasty attitudes about waiting 2o minutes in line. Our resentments would melt away when we realized they do not serve us in any way. If I thought about the words of God in such a way, as guides to transform the very things that eat at me and the relationships in my life, I would begin to live in such a way that the present, the very moment I am in would be the most important thing. Redemption would be at hand as Jesus said. We would judge one another so much less since we would be working on our own unruly attitudes. We would live happier lives and those around us would be happier too.

Much to think about.


Aunt Jenny said...

I am feeling the same way about clearing away all the Christmas stuff and getting my house back to normal again. I doubt it will happen until mid week, but I sure am ready. I do love to sit alone in the living room and knit late at night by the light of the Christmas tree but I have had a whole month of that joy and can look forward to it again next year.
I loved seeing the pictures of your are sure inspiring to me. I am still in the stage of lots of teenagers and daycare kids everywhere and grabbing my little quiet moments when I can...although I am about your same age I think. I love each season for what it brings...all different and all with their own place. I AM getting a little antsy to start some seeds though. I have to make myself wait until late March or Early april though. Hard to do!!
Have a wonderful week.

Carole said...

Well what a "coincidence", I am also reading books by the Dalai Lama - I ordered them after reading "Eat Pray Love" which I highly recommend (mostly the 2nd part in India with truly interesting parts of her personal religious experience and the conclusions she draws from it). The film was good but the book truly focuses on her spiritual path and the happy conclusion is that God is universal though bearing different names in different cultures. I think you would enjoy it.

Kristi in the Western Reserve said...

I can only say, "Amen".

Every single night before I go to sleep and every morning before I hop out of bed, the same prayer in on my lips.  Of course I pray for m...