Be Well Be Happy

Be Well Be Happy
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The holiday season is upon us or as Andy Williams use to sing, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.”

For the most part, we are able to recall and rest our hearts in the happy memories of years past spent with family and friends, but the holidays can also be the most challenging time of the year for many people. For those suffering with loss, serious illness, addiction, depression, and for caregivers and the elderly, the season of joy can trigger sadness and sorrow. Any struggle creates this suffering, which separates us from the divine inner connection, our peace, our joy, as well as from family, friends and community.

How do we reconnect with our spirit, and search the landscape of our heart for peace and clarity of mind amidst the cacophony of the never-ending news cycle and bombardment of marketing to buy things for this “joyful time of year,” as if buying another thing will quell the angst in our heart? Irish poet John O’Donohue speaks of attaining salvation and peace through both connection and solitude. Connection with others can lift our burden, perhaps just through their silent presence, where we hold space or voice a blessing in our heart for them. We can connect with community through friends, groups and clubs, faith-based organizations, or volunteering. 

On the other hand, stillness gives way to solitude, which is different than loneliness. In solitude, we rest in awareness to find our divine light and love.   Meditation and prayer are tools we can use to quiet our restless hearts and minds.  Making time to meditate, to be still and connect with spirit, can bring more calm and clarity. Meditation is a practice that one can develop and incorporate into their lives gradually.

Start by sitting comfortably in a quiet space and connecting with the subtle movement of breath through the body. Breath is our life force and our connection to spirit. Focusing on the breath brings our attention to the present. Breath is the bridge between mind and body, it quiets the waves of thoughts that distract us, creating calm. Set an intention such as peace, calm, clarity. Start with five minutes and gradually work your way to 20 minutes. “Meditation is like a meal that is served to the spirit, the food that is provided to the hungry soul of the human being. The soul is hungry. It is asking for its daily meal. We deny the food to the spirit while we give satisfaction to the body and senses, so while the body thrives and the senses grow in apparent joy of having fulfilled their desire, the spirit is starving.” Swami  Krishnananda, 1973

Transform your struggle and adversity through connecting with spirit, and you may find the most beautiful light of all this season….your radiating heart and soul. Let it shine!

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