Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Noticing Joy

It is not possible to feel disheartened when in the presence of an infant's laughter.

Nothing so testifies to the glory and unlimited potential of all the universe's can be as much as the unrestrained, pure, spontaneous belly laugh of a delighted infant. Lacking judgment, shame, and fear, those heart felt giggles cascade unendingly from a baby's mouth, infectiously scattering awe, joy, and an affirmation of Life, giving voice to the jubilant song of the heart.

The first glow of a new romance makes all life fresh again. Elation bathes the soul, skin tingles electrically, and we become excited by each pump of our heart. In those early days, consciousness bursts forth with each morning sun, filling our view with a rich, detailed, and gloriously textured pastiche of our surroundings. What was blank is now a wide-ranging canvas of gleaming colors. Life flows through and around us, creating immunity from the careworn drudgeries of our daily reality.

I am made alive by the bracing scent of a desert autumn's first raindrops as they slip silently and softly through the dry, dusty, balmy sky. As the grime of all that was is cleansed from the atmosphere, and the first splattered drips bury themselves in the sand; I am at one with the essence of Mother Earth. Together, we are rinsed young again, the purifying fragrance infusing us with vigor to face unflinchingly the day.

These are glorious moments - frequently unnoticed.

In spite of that, they are just few of the easy joys of life, woven through the banal activities of daily grocery store excursions, checkbook balancing, and jury duty. Time and again, my existence devolves to a roll call of "to-dos" with no breathing space between items. I lurch zombie-like from waking to night, blinders attached, immune to these relaxed pleasures encircling me.

In those times, I mindlessly seek comfort, reaching for what works quickly, not well: a muffin, bag of chips, a handful of chocolate from my co-worker's desk.

Feed the heartbreak, starve the Soul.

Yet, if I pause for but an instant and look around, I can add to the glorious inventory of pleasures encompassing me each moment, and revel instead in the stronger, affirmative, sensation I receive from self-control, treating well my body, and letting fly my Spirit.

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