"If it's not yet obvious to you, the real reason for this season is you. A more perfect child of the Universe has never lived. Until now, only a celebration cloaked in myth and mystery could hint at your sublime heritage and divine destiny. You are life's prayer of becoming, and its answer. The first light at the dawn of eternity, drawn from the ether, so that the Universe might know its depths, discover its heights, and frolic in endless seas of blessed emotion.
You are a pioneer into illusion, an adventurer into the unknown, and a lifter of veils. Courageous, heroic and exalted by billions in the unseen.
To give beyond reason. To care beyond hope. To love without limit. To reach, stretch, and dream, in spite of your fears. These are the hallmarks of divinity - traits of the immortal - your badges of honor. Wear them with a pride as great as the unspeakable pride we feel for you.
Your light has illuminated darkened paths, your gaze has lifted broken spirits, and already your life has changed the destiny of all who will ever follow.
This is the time of year we celebrate...each and every one of you."
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those of you who regularly read this blog know that I get "Notes from the Universe", daily emails of inspiration. Sometimes they are right-on with whatever I am going through at the moment. This is the one I received today, specifically for me, but I've removed my name and put in...yours.
Religiously speaking, I am not Christian. I believe Jesus walked the earth, but he is not my personal saviour. I believe the spark of the Divine is everywhere, in everyone, in every thing. I don't call the Divine "God", for me it is about ishvara pranidhana, one of the niyamas as Patanjali wrote in the Sutra-s. It is about stepping outside the ego and connecting with the Highest Good, the Supreme Consciousness, the energy that pervades all life, whatever it is YOU call it. Ishvara pranidhana focuses on the sacred ground of being, reuniting us with our True Self. As B. K. S. Iyengar wrote in Light on the Yoga Sutras, "Through surrender the aspirant's ego is effaced, and . . . grace . . . pours down upon him like a torrential rain."
So Christmas has a different meaning to me and has had for a very long time. Jesus' message was timeless and had nothing to do with any specific religion in my opinion. Other religions also have as their base what Jesus said -- unfortunately it is certain believers who spin those messages for their own purposes and egos.
I really do not understand the frenzy that has become inextricably linked with the "holiday season" over the years. It is the new holiday ritual to show people's craziness and greed on "Black Friday", the day after Thanksgiving, the official start of the Christmas shopping season. Reporters now all over the country wait in anticipation as the doors open of a particular store, filming customers as they knock each other over to be the first one in for that half-price sale. Yup...nothing says Christmas like being trampled.
Call me stupid, but I think the "Christmas spirit" (does that phrase still have any meaning?) is better served if we try to live it all year round to the best of our abilities. Surrendering to that Highest Good, not just between Thanksgiving and New Years, but in each present moment and trying to live mindfully.
As His Holiness the Dalai Lama said:
"A religious act is performed out of good motivation with sincere thought for the benefit of others. Religion is here and now in our daily lives. If we lead that life for the benefit of the world, this is the hallmark of a religious life.
This is my simple religion. No need for temples. No need for complicated philosophy. Your own mind, your own heart is the temple: your philosophy is simple kindness."
with metta and blessings of the season to all of you.