The eBook Zone Mind is out Now! Learn more...

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Wednesday, December 25, 2013

A Holiday Meditation on Peace, Happiness and Compassion

Wishful Thinking

I know that many of you may be busy this holiday season. I am sure that many of you are busy visiting family and friends. I'm writing this on December 25, so I assume that you have already exchanged your gifts with your family and loved ones. As I'm having a rather quiet Christmas Day, I had some time to reflect on what this season means to me.
I think that the holidays were kind of magical when I was a kid. Sadly, I stopped believing in Father Christmas when I was very young and I guess that I wanted to believe in him just because he brought me all the toys I wanted if I behaved myself. I thought that getting a new toy or the gift I have campaigned all year to get would bring me happiness. But, like all children, I played with th object of my desire for days but then, after les than a month, it would probably end up with my collection of unwanted things - with few exceptions. 
As adults,we pride ourselves as having outgrown our childhood ways. But have we really?
Our objects of desire may be more sophisticated and probably more expensive. They might not be even objects but positions and titles. We want money and prestige in most cases. Yet, as adults, we hold the belief that money will bring us that happiness that we seek. Happiness that is really disguised greed and envy. It's not enough to have food on our table and to have a roof over our head or have a family. We aren't satisfied with what we have but we want more.  We are dissatisfied with our lives not because they lack things but because we want things to be just perfect. Instead of appreciating the present moment, we are absorbed in selfish desire.
Unfortunately, our acts of "charity" we are  so often reminded of during these times appear to enforce this idea that money and wealth will bring happiness to others. Of course, money can go a long way to improve the quality gf life of those who are living in poverty or who have been denied  opportunities in life due to circumstances or because of wrong choices they might have made.
While we may be comfortable to give away money for charity to quiet our conscience, how many of us are ready to reach out to those in need at an equal level. How many of us are ready to volunteer to help without making the world knowing of our acts of generosity? How many mistake pity for charity, or patronising someone we deem less than us for compassion?
Yes, I admit that the holiday season brings back good as well as painful memories. As a disabled person, I have seen too many charity telethons were people who are different or are facing difficult times become exploited by some, not all, charity fund raisers. How much the media and parts of the public appear to perversely enjoy in listening to  stories of tragedy allegedly caused by bad luck?
Have we ever thought that many of the social problems around us are often caused by social injustice and an economical system that often encourages waste and excesses, competition and impulsiveness? 
Do we take the time to stop and reflect on what we are doing? Or reflect on where we are going?
Will the promises and new year resolutions we make for 2014 last longer than the 2nd January? 
Will we go on wasting and ruining our planet because we believe that our planet is immortal?
Will we close our minds and hearts and minds to the suffering of others once the holidays are over?
Will we change for the better or remain the same… leading the same life… a life where we are always seekin but never finding happiness?
Just look around and take a deep breath.
Tell me what do you feel?
Enjoy the holiday season - or what remains of it!
May the spirit of peace and compassion be with you for all the days of your life!
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